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Full text of "info - Issue 48 (1992-03)(.info Publications)(US)"




V i d =i o EJI^n 





03 #48 

March 1992 

U.S.A. $3.95 

Canada $4.50 

DISPLAY UNTIL April 14 



IFFiEi. 



\$!u.st!) 



In; 



pm 



O0O1-ITOO 



-**» 



•> 1'f^W! 




LEANDER 



Thanatos lurks in his lair, bathing in the power-giving life-force he is sucking 

from Princess Lucanna^Jg,, 

Princess Lucanna is dying: Imprisoned in the Sphere of Depletion her strength 

will soon be gone. 

Meanwhile, Leander - Captain Of The Guards - kneels before his master 

seeking advice. He is told: The princess is the balance between good and evil, 

if she dies, good dies and evil shall engulf the land. 

As Thanatos' power grows, the world succumbs to his evil grasp; Leander 

now has to face and conquer dangers beyond his darkest dreams before he 

can free the princess and save the land. 

•You play the part of the Princess as she hangs around inside the Sphere Of 

Depletion waiting for Leander to rescue her. Will he make it? Or will you 

spend the entire game doing nothing but having your life-force sucked? 

Leander: Where heroes Sphere to treadl 
"Psygnosis reserve the right to amend this storyline. 

SEEING IS BELIEVING 

Screen Shots from the Amiga Version 



Circle #120 on the Reader Service Card 



PSYGNOSIS 

29 Saint Mary's Court, 

Brookline, MA 02146 

Telephone: (617) 731-3553 

Fax: (617)731-8379 




OH NO! MORE 




100 Brand New MUsMp Adventures! 

Just when you thought they were finally safe those green haired numbskulls 
have blissfully blundered off towards new and greater perils. 

1 , 





ML 



Available in IBM PC compatible; Amiga and Atari ST formats. 

PSYGNOSIS, 29 Saint Mary's Court, Erooklinc, MA 02146 Telephone: (617) 731-3553 Fax; (617) 731-8379. 




Circle #125 on the Reader Service Card 



Issue #48, March 1992 

AbOUt the COVer: This month's cover was rendered in 24 bit color with Newtek's Lightwave 2.0. The 
entire cover (except for the small text) is a single 10 megabyte bit map. The strange object is a 3D 
Lissajous curve generated by Technical Tools' Lissa (see New Products this issue). As always, .info is 
produced and managed entirely with Amigas running off-the-shelf consumer software and peripherals. 
.info was the first magazine in the world produced entirely with personal computers. 



CONTENTS CONTENTS CONTENTS CONTENTS CONTENTS 




._:.- 




page 34 

Serious Science Software 

Using the Amiga for science and math 

.info Exclusive: Maple V review! 




ProVis'h 



ions 





Audio page 42 

Bob Lindstrom examines The Creativity Kit 
and The Pro Studio Kit for Bars & Pipes 
Professional. 

Video page 44 

OJ Sands plugs in the Video Blender and 
purees some pixels. 

Graphics page 46 

Brad Schenck assembles some altered realities with Pixel 3D v2.0. 

MultiMedia page 48 

Harv Laser improvises some CDTV music with CD ReMix and Music 
Maker. 



Info technical support 

52 Workbench Wonders 

Chris Zamara and Nick Sullivan 
hold forth on the ins and outs of 
Workbench icons, 
57 The Programmer Perplex 

Jim BuLterJleld addresses the 
problem of when to start 
programming for AmigaDOS 2.0, 

59 ARexx: Seven Come Eleven 

Mark R. Brown uses ARexx to solve a problem and generate some 
real-world data. 





Columns 

20 Hardware 

Mori Kevelson tests the Sapphire 
accelerator and CDROM-FS. 

22 Buy the Right Thing 

Arby tells you how to spend less 
and get more. 

25 Scala 500 

Video titling software for the rest 
of us. 

26 Knit Editor 

Let your Amiga help you design 

sweaters. 
28 Cyberplay 

Tom reviews nine new games. 
41 FractalPro 5.0 

MegageM's marvelous 

Mandelbrot maker. 



DEPARTMENTS 


6 


.info Monitor 


8 


Mail 


10 


New Products 


16 


News & Views 


19 


.info Update 


64 


Advertisers' Index 


66 


At Press Time 



A few words about ProVector", 

the professional illustrator's choice... 










Each of the above drawings was created using 
just a few of the incredible number of features 
and effects in ProVector 2.1. Professionals and 
home-users alike are praising the remarkable 
speed, ease of use, and flexibility of ProVector. 
If you're serious about creating professional- 
quality structured artwork on your Amiga, 
ProVector is the only real choice. 




Any questions? 



Stylus, Iric 



P.O. Box 1671 

Ft. Collins, CO 80522 

(303) 484-7321 

Mon.-Fri. 9-5 MST 



All illustrations were created with ProVector 2.1, then imported into Saxon Publisher 1.1 to create this ad. 
Registered owners of ProVector 2.0, be sure to contact Stylus, Inc. for upgrade information, you'll find a tremendous 
number of additional features and functions in ProVector 2.1 over previous versions. ProVector is a trademark of Stylus, Inc., 
Saxon Publisher is a registered trademark of Saxon Industries, Amiga is a registered trademark of Commodore-Amiga, Inc. copyright 199 1 ■ stylus, inc. 

Circle #128 on the Reader Service Card 




info 




I T O R 



The Best Computer in the World 



^^kay, let's say it right up front: 
This editorial is a cheerleading piece. 
That's right, it's an unabashed attempt to 
make you feel good about the Amiga. Why 
do we feel the need lo write an editorial 
like this? Because there seems to be a lot of 
Amiga-bashing going on these days. Some 
people have even accused us of doing 
some. 

We don't think of it as Amiga-bashing, 
though, when we say the Amiga needs up- 
dated technology, or reasonable pricing, or 
a broader product line. We think of it in the 
same way that Newsweek must when they 
print an editorial criticizing Congress or the 
President or the Supreme Court. When 
they're critical of (he way the system is 
working (or not working). Newsweek isn't 
saying we should abolish the American 
democratic system of government. In the 
same breath in which they criticise the gov- 
ernment, Newsweek enthusiastically sup- 
ports the ideas and ideals of our Founding 
Fathers. They're just advocating some 
change; they're hoping the system will 
work even better because of what they say. 

That goes for us, too. 

The Amiga is a totally unique computer. 
It was the first to bring real graphics power 
to the masses at a price low enough that the 
masses could afford to seriously consider 
what they might do with real graphics pow- 
er. Amiga hardware and software alike are 
priced so that people - real people, not just 
corporate people - can experiment with 
fractals, and image processing, and multi- 
media, and animation, and music, and digi- 
tized sound. Like American democracy, 
that's some revolutionary concept. When 
the Amiga was first introduced in 1985. the 
idea of bringing that kind of computing 
power to the people hadn't even occurred 
to IBM or Apple. It took them so much by 
surprise that seven years passed before they 
could adequately respond to the challenge. 
In many ways, they still fall short. 

Because the Amiga is still a helluva com- 
puter. People can talk all they want about 
what a 'ureal deal' a '386 clone is at 'under 



S1000'. but what do you get for your mon- 
ey? The capability to run a lot of under- 
powered, high-priced MS/DOS and Win- 
dows software. It still ain't an Amiga, folks. 
You got no decent sound, you got 256 col- 
ors (which isn't HAM), and you got a meg 
of RAM (all of which is used up by the 
operating system if you run Windows.) The 
Amiga can run significant multitasking ap- 
plications in just 512K of RAM. Nobody, 
and I mean nobody, else can come even 
close to that. Multitasking on other plat- 
forms is just plain sluggish... at least, until 
you have a couple of grand lo throw at up- 
grading your system. 

Of course, time marches on, and Amiga 
applications have progressed to the point 
where it really is time that the Amiga 
should move on, too. And, like the others 
who grumble about Commodore's sluggish- 
ness, we believe that they could, right now, 
deliver an '020 based machine with en- 
hanced graphics, a 40 meg hard drive or 
better, a monitor, and a meg of RAM for 
under SI 000. We wish they would. It would 
make our jobs a lot easier. And they'll have 
to eventually, since the Amiga is up against 
a lot stiffer competition now than it was 
seven years ago. 

But they haven't yet, so we are stuck 
with what we've got. But at least what 
we're stuck with a great machine. And we 
know Commodore is working on the next 
wave of technology. Maybe they'll even 
adjust Amiga prices so they're more in line 
with the competition. Who knows? But. in 
the meantime, we can bask in the knowl- 
edge that whatever Mac and IBM users are 
buying, they're not Amigas. Not even 
close. And when the day comes that Com- 
modore does make its next move, maybe 
they'll shake the earth as much as the C64 
and the Amiga 1000 did in their day. Let's 
hope so. And let's hope that day comes 
soon. 

- Mark & Benn 



.info Publications 



Publisher & Editor 

Benn Dunnington 

Managing Editor 

Mark R. Brown 

Senior Editor 

Tom Malcom 

Contributing Editors 

Mort Kevelson 

Harv Laser 
Bob Lindstrom 

Jim Meyer 

Oran J. Sands III 

Brad Schenck 

Nick Sullivan 

Chris Zamara 

Art & Production 

Megan Ward 
Tony Bodensteiner 

Data Manager 

Theresa Dunnington 

Advertising Director 

Anna Folkers 



Advertising Sales 

Facsimile 

Subscriptions 



(319)338-3620 
(319)338-0897 
(319) 338-0703 



COPYRIGHT© 1992 
BY .info PUBLICATIONS 
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED 



.into (ISSN 08975868) is published monthly except 
bi-monthly in August-September by .info Publications. 
705 Highway 1 Wesl, Iowa City. I A 52246. US 
subscription rale is S26.00. one year; $47,50. Iwo years; 
S65.00. three years. Canada/Mexico rales in US funds 
are $34.00. one year; S63.50. Iwo years; $89.00. three 
years. Foreign surlace rate is S50.00 (US funds), one 
year. Second-class postage paid at Iowa City, IA and at 
additional mailing office POSTMASTER: Send address 
changes lo .inlo. 705 Highway One, towa City, IA 52246, 

.info is an independent journal not connected with 
Commodore Business Machines, fnc. National and 
worldwide distribution by Kable News Co., New York. NY. 
Entire contents copyright 1992 by info Publications, Iowa 
City. IA. No part of this publication may be printed or 
otherwise reproduced wilhout written permission from Ihe 
publisher, .info makes every effort lo assure the accuracy 
of articles, stories, and reviews published in this 
magazine, .info assumes no responsibility lor damages 
due to errors or omissions. 



,infO MARCH iW2 



TeD Our Art Department 
lb \M Weekends 




You have a deadline coming up, 
and the pressure is really on. 
So relax. Go on a picnic. 
Art Department Professional 
(ADPro) is working the weekend. 

ADPro's comprehensive ARexx 
interface allows you to convert 
formats, animate, image process, 
grab video, record on film and more, 
even while you're not there. 

Being able to work straight through 
the weekend (as well as the other 
1 20 hours in the week) means that 
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which otherwise couldn't be 
done at all. 

Every aspect of ADPro, 
including its advanced image 
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Get Art Department Professional. 

It works weekends, so you don't 
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925 Stewart Street 

Madison, Wl 53713 

608/273-6585 



The following names are trademarks by (he indicated companies: Art Department Professional: ASDC Incorporated. ARexx: Wishful Thinking Development Corp. 

Circle #107 on the Reader Service Card 



READ 




MAIL 



.info Mail Boxes 

Our U.S. Mail address is: 

.info Reader Mail, 
705 Highway 1 West 
Iowa City, IA 52246 

FAX us at 319-338-0897 

Send EMail to the editors at: 
COMPUSERVE 70215,1034 

PORTAL INFO MAG 

GEnie INFO.MAG 

BIX INFO.MAG 

InterNet infomag@cup.portal.com 
Please do not use our EMail addresses 
to inquire about subscription problems. 
Mail sub problems and address 
changes to the Subscription Depart- 
ment at the above U.S. Mail address. 



I totally agree with your edito- 
rial in the February 1992 issue. 1 have been 
trying to decide whether to upgrade my 
current A500 with a hard drive and memory 
expansion, buy an A2000HD. or buy a 386 
computer. This was a tough decision, since 
I am also Systems Manager for the com- 
pany I work at. which has MS/DOS com- 
patibles. I love the Amiga, but more and 
more of my lime is spent with clones. 

The bottom line is that I had decided to 
vote with my emolions and purchase an 
A2000HD, selling my A500. Those plans 
came to a screeching halt after the price 
increase of January 1. Has Commodore 
gone nuts! It's getting very tough to justify 
an Amiga purchase. I definitely will not 
buy an A2000 at these prices. I can buy a 
386SX 20MHz system with VGA color 
monitor and SO meg hard drive for under 
S 1 200. 

I have been a dedicated Commodore 
owner since 1983. 1 have talked other peo- 
ple into buying Commodore products as 
well because I knew that Commodore 
offered the best bang for the buck for home 
use. That is sadly no longer true. They 
seem to have forgotten what got them 
where they are. 

In order lo survive in the U.S. market, 
Commodore must mass market both their 
Amiga line and their PC clones al competi- 
tive prices 

I haven't bought my 386 clone yet, but if 



Commodore doesn"t wake up soon, I won't 
be the only one to make the decision lo say 
'Commodore, it's been nice, but it's time to 
move on.' 

- Gordon Johnson. Grand Rapids. MI 

This is only the beginning, folks. Read on: 
- Mark & Benn 

I have a dilemma. After being 
an A500 user for a little over a year. I 
decided to upgrade. I wanted lo buy an 
A2000, which at the time was selling for 
$1499. 1 thought 1 could afford it so I went 
to my dealer with my A500 and sold ii. I 
got $300 lowards the purchase of a new 
Amiga, It got even better because at that 
lime, the retail for an A2000 was down 
S500 to $999. I thought thai il was a very 
good price, but since there was a lot of talk 
about Amiga OS 2.0 being put into new 
machines. I decided to wait, collect some 
more cash and buy the computer, hard disk, 
and extra RAM. The dealer told me thai the 
Amigas wilh the new OS installed would 
be available by February. 1 patiently waited. 
Bui then in January, I saw the new price for 
the A2000 - S1699!!! 1 couldn't believe my 
eyes. My jaw was on the floor. SI 699 for a 
computer wilh 1MB RAM. I floppy disk 
drive, and that's it - never'. Il may seem like 
ireason, bui I'm really considering buying a 
Mac or even an IBM. Just think: for $1899 
I can get a Mac with 16MHz "020, 32,000 
colors, and 40MB hard drive. Or for $989 I 
can gel an IBM-compatible with 42MB 
hard drive, super VGA card, VGA monitor, 
16MHz 386, one high-density 3.5" floppy 
drive, one 5.25" 1.2MB floppy drive. 3- 
button mouse, and keyboard, Is Com- 
modore actually helping Apple to sell more 
Macs? I don' i know what lo do. I need a 
computer and I hope it's an Amiga - bul not 
at this price. Please help me! 

- Greg Laniewski. Port Chester, NY 

The two letters above me only the tip of the 
iceberg of mail we've hail on the subject of 
Commodore raising the price of the A2000. 
To be fair, they did state clearly that the 
pre-Christmas 199! price was a sale price 
and only temporary, lint they stunned 
everyone by raising the base cost as much 
OS they did and everyone is in agreement 



that it is way out of line. With the recession, 
clone makers lowering prices all over the 
place, and Apple selling Macs al lower- 
tlutn-ever prices, we simply can't see any 
justification for what Commodore has 
done. If anything, their production costs for 
the A2000 have decreased. We can only 
shake our heads in sad bewilderment and 
hope that Commodore wakes up, smells the 
microchips, and brings the price hack 
down. - Mark & Benn 



w ust a quick nole lo thank you 
for a great mag. 1 almost did not renew my 
subscription litis year wilh times being so 
tighi, but I sal down and thought just how 
luck)' Amiga users are to have such a great 
mag! I was always told if you like some- 
thing, support it because you will miss it 
when ii's gone. And I would hate lo see 
.info go the way of so many others. It 
seems like I grew up reading .info - 1 was a 
diehard C64 fan and now I'm a diehard 
Amiga fan. Keep up the great work. 

- John Sullivan. Porl Huron, Ml 

You certainly know how to get your name in 
print! It's nice to hear now and then that 
we're appreciated. It's people like you who 
have allowed us to last into our ninth year 
of publication. Thanks for the first obliga- 
tory .info is great letter we've printed in a 
while. - Benn & Mark 



I just picked up your latest .info 
mag and read the distressing news about 
the delays in production of the Model 10 
Amiga laptop. 1 immediately phoned 
Newer Technologies about the status of the 
machine and ihey said they were taking 
orders for it, bui he 'didn't know' if any 
had been shipped yet. I am thinking of pur- 
chasing one. but I don't want to invest 
money in something that is as blurry as 
this. Any ideas? 

- mboulanger. BIX 

As always, we recommend that you keep 
your money and your VISA card number in 
your pocket until a product is real. We' ve 
been promised the 'first unit' for review, 
and will let you know immediately when the 
laptop is ready. - Mark & Benn 



8 .info MARCH 1992 





Guy Spy is a break- through in adventure gamins 
featuring full-screen animated characters that are 
completely under your control! With over 1,500 frames of 
animation, five megabytes of graphic data and original music 
and sound effects, Guy Spy sets a new standard in adventure 
gaming excellence. 

As Guy Spy you are the government's most trusted and daring counter- 
espionage agent. Intelligence reports confirm the evil Baron Von Max has 
located the legendary Crystals of Armageddon. With the power of the crystals In the 
hands of this madman, Von Max will have everything he needs to fuel his ultimate 
weapon of mass-destruction... the doomsday machine. 

you must chase Von Max and his henchmen around the globe in a desperate bid to 
save the world from his evil plans. If you fail, there is no telling what kind of 
destruction Von Max will unleash on the world. Your orders are simple: stop Von Max 
at any cost... before it's too latel 



Read yS oft 



ReadySoft Incorporated 
30 Werthelm Court, Suits 2 
Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada L4B 1 B9 
Tel: (416)7314175 Fax: (416) 7644867 

Circle #119 on the Reader Service Card 



-Giy Spy' a i traUmirt tl ReiSySort IncamotatKl, cownjht 61S91 BoSsSoft Inonwrao. 
ALL HIGHTS RESERVED 



NEW 




U C T S 



AMIGA & NOVELL 

5ome of the best news for the 
Amiga community in a long, long time 
comes with the release of ftv.w's Amiga 
Client Software, which allows Amigas lo 
be connected to a Novell NetWare network. 
ACS requires Novell NetWare 2.15 or bet- 
ter, a LAN ARC-Net or Ethernet card, and 
the necessary cabling, but once that's out of 
the way, installation of the software only 
takes a few minutes. The Amiga still func- 
tions as an Amiga, multitasking and all. but 
you'll be able to lake advantage of all the 
network functions as well. There are utili- 
ties provided for file management and secu- 
rity, printer functions, login management 
(including passwords and scripts), network 
accounting, and so on. You can customize 
the system and have your preferences auto- 
matically set al login and scripts can exe- 
cute both AmigaDOS and NetWare com- 
mands. Security for both the system and 
data are probably the most important con- 
siderations on a network, and there are 
plenty of provisions here. Directory access 
can be controlled, record-locking protects 
data in shared files, user files can be pro- 
tected by password and access-rights 
assignment, and file ownership is assigned 
automatically. Multiple users can access a 
file concurrently and each user is provided 
with a confidential mail area. The system 
also includes an Amiga-specific 
backup/restoration utility and a message 
system. 

The significance of Amiga Client Soft- 
ware is that it will bring our favorite 
machine into even wider acceptance as a 
viable addition to networks everywhere. 
The cost is on a scale: a single node costs 
$ 199, up to five for $499, up lo ten for 
$899, up to 20 - S 1 299, and up lo 50 - 
$1799. Oxxi, PO Box 90309. Long Beach. 
CA 90809. 2 1 3-427- 1 227. RS #200 

MASTER OF PRESENTATIONS 



O, 



'xvi's description of Presen- 
tation Master starts of with the line. 
"Remember Show and Tell?" Well, yes we 
do, but we're trying lo forget the embar- 
rassment when we showed Ihe entire sec- 
ond grade the pictures of Uncle Delben and 
the stripper. Presentation Master could 



fasaMup 



Novetta!3,l39!9:i7air. 



r 



Enter login inf ornat ton 



User Kane 
Passu ord 



0XXI/T1H 



rntWKKK 

Click Close Box to return to HorkBench 



Login Status 



Good Horning, Tin. 

QUOTE (If THE DAY: 
Good fortune will shine upon you, 
You bo longer need to rtake backups of yotir important files, 

Happing Uf: to OXXI .RHIGR:UP 

Happing PMNT: to OXXI firllGfllHP/HORDPERrECT 

You are logged in as <DXXI/TIH> 



One of the 

several utilities 

from Oxxi's 

Amiga Client 

Software, which 

connects an 

Amiga to a 

Novell network. 



— 



have helped us do a much better job of it. It 
is a sophisticated system for creating both 
onscreen ami hardcopy presentations. PM is 
organized around a slideshow metaphor 
with a multi-level heirarchical structure. 

Slides can be grouped, rearranged, cut, 
and pasted to your heart's content. The 
individual slides can contain hotspols, so 
users can click on a spot and move lo 
another slide or subset of slides (a stan- 
dalone player program is included in the 
package). There's an object-oriented paint 
section that supports standard objects like 
circles and rectangles, splines, and the other 
usual functions of a structured drawing pro- 
gram, as well as object tweening and mor- 
phing. 

Tools for getting text onto the slides 
include wordprocessor functions, emboss- 
ing, outlines, and automatic dropshadows. 
You can also cut and paste from one slide 
to another, a real timesaver. Chans can be 
generated from data imported from spread- 
sheets or ASCII files. You can also enter 
dala directly if you want and it is possible 
to revise il even after rendering (he chart. 
The special (ext effects can also be applied 
to the chans. Font support includes the 
same scalable PolyFonls used in Aegis' 
Video Tiller 3D; they can be bent, distorted, 
resized, and otherwise tortured just like 
other structured objects. It can also use 
Amiga Outline fonts. Clip art can he 
applied in a variety of formats, including 
not just the usual Amiga brushes and IFF 
files, but also Adobe Illustrator EPS format 
files. Once imported, the objects are con- 



verted to Presentation Master objects 
which are then fully-editable. PM uses an 
internal palette of 16.7 colors and has a 
pop-up palette of over 200 colors. 

When it comes time for output, colors 
can be specified as CMYK or 24-bit RGB 
for Panlone or DIC matching. They can be 
sent to PostScript devices with no loss of 
accuracy. Output can be through standard 
Amiga printer drivers as well as both black 
& white and color PostScript. There's a 
function for posterizing slides and another 
for PostScript storyboard output. Whew! 
Sounds like a complete presentation system 
from here. Presentation Master requires at 
least 2 megs of RAM (more is always bet- 
ter) and a hard drive. Price is $299.95. 
Oxxi, PO Box 90309, Long Beach. CA 
90809. 2 1 3-427- 1 227. RS #201 

OUT OF THE WAY 



D, 



'oes your mouse cord 
invariably get in your way? Of course it 
does, that's one of the eternal laws of the 
universe. Advanced /mage has come up 
with a solution for you. Mouse Control is 
a liltle stand with a hook at the top to hold 
the mouse cord, thus elevating it up out of 
your way. It sils on a plastic base and has a 
spring so it can flex if it needs to. It's a 
clever device and its S9.95 pricetag won't 
break your budget. 2 Route 13 South, 
Brookline. NH 03033. 603-673-0212. RS 
#202 



10 .info march 1992 



a- 



Q 



300ReasonsTo 

Buy An Amiga 3000 

More April W 




A check for five hundred bucks. 

Thais what you can gel direct from 
Commodore when you buy an Amiga' 3000- 
25/50, or 3000-25/100 before April 30th. 
Or, you can even use your S500 immediately 
right in the store toward the purchase of 
your Amiga. 

Amiga 3000 series computers set the 
standard for multimedia platforms, with true 
32-bil architecture for demanding video and 
graphics applications. The A3000-25/100 
features a 100M hard drive and 5M HAM. 




The A3000-25/50 has a 50M hard drive 
and 2M RAM. 

All Amiga 30005 feature four-voice, two- 
channel sound, thousands of displayable 
colors, Amiga Vision" (which lets you control 
graphics and video simultaneously), on-site 
service* and convenient leasing terms. 

For more information, call 1-800-66- 
AMIGA. Or see your participating authorized 
Commodore-Amiga dealer before April 30th, 
(Terms may vary in Canada. Call 
800-661-AM1GA.) 



Q- 



Cr Commodore 1 

AMIGA 



u 



C L992C<niuwbrc tames Midina. Ik. Com^ A!K^tsiF^jerdirsiknaScoiCmai3DdoTt^\Eii^,Itic 

N« valUwtHCTyotiicrpitt&iMttilt&is Vtai!ibic^ftfirDH|mhixdmthtU5 throu^.jnMr)i>ri^Cflrainis3orE-Amijp dealer 

Circle #173 on the Reader Service Card 



NEW 




U C T S 



One of the 

configuration 

screens used in 

setting up GVP's 

PC286 IBM AT 

emulator the 
way you want it. 



GVP MS-DOS 




D, 



'on'teven think about buying 
an IBM AT clone until you've checked out 
Great Valley Products' GVP/PC286. 
Before we go any further, you have to 
know that it requires a GVP Series II 
A500HD8+. The board plugs into the mini- 
slot of the hard drive/expansion system and 
won't work on anything else. However, if 
you do have one of GVP's Series 11 drives, 
this is a painless and relatively inexpensive 
(retail price is $469) way to add IBM 286 
capability to your system. Ii doesn't require 
you to open up your A500. so you won't 
void your warranty, and it installs easily in 
the Series 11. 

The PC286 is built around a 1 6Mhz 
80286 CPU, has 5I2K of RAM onboard, 
and has a spot for an optional 80C287 math 
co-processor. The unit boasts a Norton 
speed index rating of 15, comparable to 
some 386 machines. The PC286 runs as a 
concurrent process on the Amiga and can 
automatically use any Amiga floppy drive 
as an MS-DOS device, leaving your Amiga 
to multitask merrily away. There will be 
some slowdown depending on what graph- 
ics modes you choose, but it's still surpris- 
ingly quick. It supports MS-DOS partitions 
on GVP Series 11 hard drives, which is only 
to be expected since it lives in one. The 
most practical considerations have all been 
anticipated: the mouse is recognized as a 
COM 1 or COM 2 Microsoft serial mouse, 
the serial port can be configured as COM 1 



or COM 2 {depending on mouse), the 
Amiga parallel port becomes LPTI, and the 
Amiga's internal clock is used. Memory 
can be allocated as you prefer; the PC286 
starts out with the base 640K and you can 
specify how much of the Amiga's memory 
is used as Extended or Expanded memory, 
up to six megabytes. Of course, what 
you're really wondering is whether the 
PC286 does Windows. It does indeed, run- 
ning unrestricted in 286 Protected Mode, 
allowing it to operate as a 32-bit machine 
capable of addressing up to 16 megabytes. 
To use Windows, though, you'll need more 
than 1 Mb of RAM and at least 10 megs of 
hard disk storage. In real life, you'll proba- 
bly want to configure the system to use all 
the available RAM on your machine; Win- 
dows is a champion memory hog. The 
video display offers several emulation 
options: EGA & VGA monochrome, CGA 
16-color, Hercules. Olivetti, and Toshiba 
3100. The display is also compatible with 
Amiga flicker-fixers. The PC286 package 
comes with installation software, a disk of 
utilities, and a thorough manual. You will 
have to provide your own MS-DOS version 
3.2 or higher, or DR DOS 5.0 or above. 600 
Clark Avenue. King of Prussia, PA 19406. 
215-337-8770. RS #203 

FONT NEWS 

I he latest in Kara Computer 
Graphics' long line of high-quality fonts 
are Headlines 3 and AnimFonts 4. The 



Headlines 3 four-disk set ($79.95) contains 
four popular Toaster font typefaces con- 
verted to 8-color hi-res. The styles are 
CHROMEserif, GOLDextrude, GRAN- 
ITEchisel, and MARBLEbevel. They come 
in three sizes: 76, 100, and 124. The Anim- 
Fonts 4 ($59.95) is a beautifully rendered 
CHROMEchiselSCRIPT gothic-type font 
that can be used with any software that sup- 
ports the AnimBrush format. The animated 
characters start off by wiping a static image 
onto the screen and then burning it off with 
a laser beam. Neat effect. 2554 Lincoln 
Blvd., Suite 1010, Marina del Rey, CA 
90291. 310-578-9177. RS #204 

MORE FONT NEWS 

Image Fonts is a three-disk set 
containing a single font in four different 
styles, all in Imagine object format. The 
typeface is a medium bold Bank Gothic and 
the styles are plain, chisel-edge, bevel- 
edge, and an embossed-edge with a plain- 
edged center. This last one is actually a 
two-piece font. The font is designed for 
Phong shading and includes the letters A-Z 
and numerals 0-9. S29.95 from CRC Pro- 
ductions. PO Box 9, Mantachie, MS 38855. 
RS #205 

CROSSOVER 

\* onsultron garnered justifiable 
praise for CrossDOS. their virtually trans- 
parent MS-DOS/Amiga file transfer soft- 
ware. It made life with a Bridgeboard worth 
living. Now the company is releasing an 
upgrade and an entirely new product that 
can make MS-DOS even easier to get along 
with. CrossDOS version 5.0 Plus not only 
has an enhanced version of the file transfer 
utility but also includes CrossPC, a PC-XT 
emulator done entirely in software. Cross- 
DOS itself now supports 1.44 megabyte 
high-density and 20 Mb floptical disks in 
addition to the usual 360K and 720K for- 
mat floppies, along with MS-DOS parti- 
tions on your hard drive. Consultron has 
also redone the interface, improved error 
handling, and reworked the utilities. 
CrossPC is compatible with AmigaDOS 
2.0 running on any model (there's even an 
optimized version for 68020, '030, and 



12 .info MARCH 1992 



NEW 




U C T S 



'040 machines) and is configurable lo bool 
from a PC partition on an Amiga hard 
drive. You will have to supply your own 
copy of MS-DOS. version 3.0 or higher. 
CmssPC runs as a task on lite Amiga, mak- 
ing it possible to run IBM and Amiga soft- 
ware at the same time. Owners of earlier 
versions of CrossDOS can upgrade for $20, 
and the retail price of the new CrossDOS 
version 5.0 Pitts is $59.95. 

Consultron is also shipping the Ambas- 
sador, a utility specifically for Bridgeboard 
users. It allows the Bridgeboard to access 
any drives attached to the Amiga as if they 
were connected directly to the Bridgeboard. 
That means no more swapping drives 
around. The Ambassador provides direct 
access to virtual partitions created by the 
Bridgeboard. though it offers faster access 
through its own version of virtual drive par- 
titions. The Ambassador lists for $79.95 
and owners of CrossDOS can upgrade to it 
for S40. 

As if ihese two new titles weren't 
enough. Consultron is distributing Contact. 
a "Phonebook at your fingertips" which 
was originally published in Australia by- 
DeskTop Utilities. It's an memory-resident 
address book that can be called up with a 
hotkey of your own choosing. One of the 
niftiest features is thai it can be popped up 
on nearly any program's screen and will 
type an address directly into any text win- 
dow. That means you can select the address 
you want, hit a button, and have it appear in 
your wordproccssor or whatever; it even 
supports (he clipboard device. The software 
also has a phone dialler, label printing func- 
tion for Preferences and PostScript, and 
ARexx support for all its functions. As 
icing on the utility cake. Contact also 
includes CalcKey, an onscreen calculator 
with the same screen-sharing features as 
Contact. Cost is $59.95. For more informa- 
tion, particularly for upgraders. contact 
Consultron at 1 1 280 Parkview. Plymouth. 
MI 48 1 70. 3 1 3-459-727 1. RS #206 

MATHING AROUND 



We 



re love interesting mathemat- 
ical software around here and the latest 
we've come across is EasySaipt! Soft- 
ware's Mark's MathLab. It's aimed at 



high school or college-level math students, 
but that doesn't stop it from being of inter- 
est to anyone else. The software has 34 
built-in mathematical functions, a variety of 
graphing modes, and online help. The func- 
tion requesters can accept up to 150 or 225 
characters, with up to 75 tokens and quads 
per expression, and as many as 30 constants 
for each expression. Plotting of single 



variables can be in either Cartesian or Polar 
coordinates and two-variable functions can 
be plotted with or without hidden surfaces. 
The graphs can be viewed from any rota- 
tional position. Sounds like a good time lo 
us! $49.95. 10006 Covington Drive. 
Hunlsville, AL 35803. 205-881-6297. RS 
#207 




Circle #112 on the Reader Service Card 



NEW 




U C T S 



Text 

automatically 

flowed in two 

columns around 

a graphic in 

Softwood's new 

wordprocessor, 

Final Copy. 



hncl -opy 1 ? 



0| 



-"~Tr 



k ' - ■ -v T 



Release ISbtes_.. 

The bRoviing in fcimd bn is 
dlher not faurd in Flral 
Copy's U'.vi Mnnni, 
or rnerrtoirismadftcdicna 
trnt "hnw! been mode to the 
arifjnd program. You 
may vtenl io load Hiis. tile ivio 
FlndCapycindnrM it 





1 ThedefcuB fat It33 been channed 



4. The PrJnter_lnstall program htis 
been oddsd lo Ihe FCProgram dslf. 
Ifyou 

da red hpve o hard drrve. isetNa 
|.<-!*;v]in fa In :r li II .■■ appiannfcde 

pi N er driver on t he FCPfoaram 
dsfc Aler >otJUSe(liePrHEr_lrEbll 

program, jou wiU need b tzKes 
the W^kheneh Preferences on fhe 

FCProgmm dbfc and select the 
printer driver you instdled. It>au 
have 

ai "Epson a HP compatible 
prinlcr, thm drivers are already on The 
FCPraoitMn cE^f, and need rot be 



L4S7 REPRODUCTION 

I here's a new kid on the word- 
processing block. Final Copy comes from 
SoftWood and Woody Williams, author of 
PenPal, Proper Grammar, and other Amiga 
hits. The emphasis in Final Copy is on 
printed output and it is based around out- 
line font technology. The package comes 
with 34 outline typefaces, which since 
they're not bitmap fonts, can be scaled to 
whatever size you need and printed at the 
best resolution your printer is capable of. 
There's also a built-in PostScript driver to 
give you the best possible output. The char- 
acters can be scaled from 4-point all the 
way up to 300-point. which translates to 1/8 
of an inch to nearly 4 inches. If you need 
anything bigger than four inches, we'd sug- 
gest skywriting instead. Final Copy isn't 
limited to just high-quality type, either. 
There's provision for importing graphics 
and Final Copy uses a 12 bit-plane tech- 
nique for printing them in their original col- 
ors. The graphics can be cropped and 
placed anywhere on the page and text will 
automatically flow around them. The usual 
editing functions are present, along with 
layout tools that include leading control (4 
to 250 points), automatic text columns, and 
various levels of magnification. Final Copy 
also has its own 1 16,000 word dictionary 
and 470,000 synonym thesaurus that 
includes definitions and works very much 
like Softwood's Electric Thesaurus. The 
most surprising thing about Final Copy is 
its price; it retails for $99.95. Given the 



power and quality, we would have expected 
it to be a couple of hundred bucks more. 
PO Box 50178, Phoenix, A2 85076. 602- 
431-9151. RS #208 

CURVACEOUS 

1 1 is going to be a lot easier to 
show what Lissa does than describe it in 
words. If you'll look at the graphic at the 
bottom of the page, you'll see some shapes 
(referred to as Lissajous curves - hence the 
name) that were generated by the program. 
They can be used in one of two ways, either 
as motion paths for Imagine or Turbo Sil- 
ver, or as the basis for extruding objects. 
The curves are shaped by sinusoidal func- 
tions defined on a sphere. The manual 
describes the process in terms of a pendu- 



lum. If you swing a pendulum over a sand- 
box, the path drawn in the sand is a Lis- 
sajous curve. However, that pattern is only 
two-dimensional. If you take the same 
motion idea and apply it to a splvere, what 
you wind up with are ihe curves Lissa pro- 
duces. Varying the starting points, length of 
the swing, and angles makes some very 
interesting shapes. $35.00 from Technical 
Tools, 2 S 461 Cherice Drive, Warrenville, 
IL 60555. 708-393-6350. RS #209 

CDTV DEVELOPMENT 



M, 



' erii Software has a new 
video-based CDTV development system 
called VidDISC. They're not currently 
marketing it as a product, but rather as a 
service. From what we've seen, the multi- 
media applications produced with il are 
much more like those for CD-I than we've 
previously seen for CDTV. The possibilities 
for applications produced with VidDISC 
range from point-of-sale demonstrations to 
educational reference works to industrial 
training. Merit tells us that they will proba- 
bly be marketing the development system 
itself in the future, but that for now, they're 
producing turn-key applications with it. 
The cost of an appl ication ranges from 
about $25,000 at the low end to upwards of 
$200,000, depending on the amount of 
material provided lo them and the type of 
work required to put it together. In the pro- 
duction process. Merit offers services such 
as content analysis, script writing and tal- 
ent, audio/video production, foreign 




Lissajous curves 
extruded and 
rendered as 
objects with 

Technical Tools* 
Lissa. 



14 .info MARCH 1992 



ScrPBti Uenei i atntf £ lyyi JO Uraphics Version 1..1 



«P 



PRO FILLS SCREENGENERATOR 

COPVRIGHT 1991 JEK GRAPHICS 



QUIT 



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SCREEN FORMAT 


LOW RES 


;i(,a*Mi 


MED RES 


736x241 


INTERLACE 


366x482 


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OVERSC 


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ALTERNATE PALETTE 

BlucGrjiy.7.7.11 



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MODIFIED PATTERN 



SAVE 



SAVE 



BACKGROUND SCREEN 



RENDER 



-» 



— 



Pro Fills 2.0 

control panel 

and the pattern 

it generated. 



language translation, CD duplication, pro- 
gramming, and periodic updates to the 
application. This is the firsi such compre- 
hensive service of this type we've seen for 
CDTV and we expect to see some kilter 
applications come out of it. For more infor- 
mation, contact Merit Software, 13635 
Gamma Road, Dallas, TX 75244. 214-385- 
2353. RS #220 

SWITCHER 

I he switch from 1.3 to 2.0 
Workbench has spawned a whole industry 
devoted to easing the transition. The latest 
is Expert Services' SwitchStart ROM 
Adapter. It's a low-cost ($59.95) little 
board that plugs into the Kickstart ROM 
socket on the motherboard of an A500. 
A2000. or Rejuvenator-ec|uipped A1000. 
The SwitehStart board has its own sockets 
for two Kickstart ROMs and there's a phys- 
ical switch that installs on the outside of the 
computer's case for choosing which one 
you want to boot from. The manual has 
detailed instructions for installing the thing, 
but if you've never done any chip-pulling 
or installing, you should have a dealer do it 
for you. 5912 Centennial Circle, Florence. 
KY 41042. 606-371-9690. RS #210 



,. . i. ■,. « . ,■ .» ■» t mt On r i n i i i 



FILLING UP 



W. 



' e were impressed with JEK 
Graphics' Pro Fills a couple of years ago 
and now the company has released a new 
2.0 version of the background generation 
software. Rather than being just a collec- 
tion of screens and patterns. Pro Fills 2.0 is 
a standalone product with a slick, simple- 
to-use interface. There is a collection of 
textures and patterns to gel you started, 
along with a very' nice selection of palettes 
(hat can lie applied to them. There are actu- 
ally two sets of palettes, one for RGB dis- 
plays and the other tailored for composite 
video. Pro Fills is very fast, rendering 
screens in only a couple of seconds, so you 
can do plenty of experimenting without 
wasting a lot of time. The results of your 
labors can be saved as standard IFF 
screens. S49.95. 12103 South Brookhurst 
Street, Suite E-125. Garden Grove. CA 
92642. 7 1 4-530-7603. RS #2 1 1 w 



New Products now have 
Reader Service Numbers! 

If you want more information on a 

product just look for the RS# and 

circle the corresponding Number on 

one of the Reader Service Cards. 




I 
I 

I. 



Turning your two dimensional world into 3D 
doesn't require special glassei All you need 
Is PIXEL 3D 2,0 and a mile Imagination. 

For those ol you who hove always lusied 
tor Ihe power to shape your world, It's here in 
the form of Pixa 3D 2.O. PIXEL 3D 2.0 Is the 
most powerful object utility toot ever con- 
ceived for the AMIGA computer. 

PIXEL 3D 2.0 eliminated 90% ot the time it 
takes to create geometric solid* tram two 
dimensional pictures. PIXEL 3D 2.0 is the 
"must hove" tool ffrat provides bridging; to 
many ol the most popular rendering pro- 
grams In use today thereby realizing peak 
efficiency. 

So, it you want to turn your two dimensional 
world into 3D wilh professional authority, get 
PIXEL, 3D 2.0 today You'll never be the same 
again. 

AXIOM SOFTWARE 

1221 East Center Street 

Rochester, Minnesota 55904 

Phone: (507)289-6677 



Circle #11 3 on the 
Reader Service Card 



I 



NEWS 




I E W S 



A sample 

screen from 

Virgin Games' 

Guest 

for M PC 

CD-ROM. 




NOBLE CAUSE 



W, 



' e've always admired 
ASDG's products and now we have reason 
to admire (heir motives as well. The com- 
pany has released an arcade game. Ring- 
War, as charity-ware. The idea is similar to 
the shareware concept, but instead of send- 
ing a fee to die author. ASDG is requesting 
that a contribution of S10 be sent to one of 
three national charities: the American Can- 
cer Society, the Muscular Dystrophy Asso- 
ciation, or the American Red Cross. Ring- 
Wars was written by ASDG staffer Eric 
Bazan and is a space-based came in the "if 
it moves - shoot it" genre. It's available 
online and the addresses of the charities are 
listed in the opening credits. Kudos all 
around to ASDG. 925 Stewart Street, Madi- 
son. WI 53713. 608-273-6585. 

GUEST AT CES 

I he single most impressive 
new thing at the January CES was Guest, a 
new game from Virgin. It's not available 
for Amiga (and it's uncertain whether it 
ever will be), but it's so revolutionary that 
we felt you ought to know about it. 
Designed for MPC CD-ROM (the IBM 
computer-based version of multimedia that 
some think will shut out CD-I and CDTV), 
Guest is the first fully raytraced. animated 
game ever. The game is enormous, occupy- 
ing over 600 megabytes, and is an interac- 
tive horror story set in a creepy mansion. 
The SVGA graphics were rendered entirely 

16 .info MARCH 1992 



with Autodesk 3D and there are over 30 
rooms in all. The real wonder of Guest is 
that as you move around a room, your 
viewpoint changes realistically, much as if 
you were viewing it through a video cam- 
era. The image shown here is a composite, 
showing on the right the wireframe that 
was used to model the room rendered on 
the left, Guest is a breakthrough game and 
only a hint of what will surely follow. For 
more information, contact Virgin Games at 
18061 Fitch Avenue, Irvine, CA 927 14. 
7I4_K33-8710. 

EYECATCHER 

A"\nother eye-catching product 
at CES has nothing to do with computers, 
but it has everything to do with color and 
video. The Telefire is a sort of kaleido- 
scopic device that you hang in front of your 
TV (or monitor) screen where it produces 
colorful, ever-changing patterns. If you 
remember the Mindlighi 7, this has some- 
thing of the same effect, but is non- 
electronic. There are two models: the Cubit 
30 fits 19-21 inch TVs and sells for SI 10. 
while the Cubit 40 fits 25-30 inch screens 
and goes for SI 40. The Telejhe is from 
Western Light, 16 Madrone Park Circle, 
Mill Valley. CA 94941. 415-388-3030. 

ACTIVISION NEWS 

%J ust when we thought Activi- 
sion was dead and gone (the parent com- 
pany, Mcdiagenic, filed for bankruptcy pro- 



tection in 1 99 1 ), we now hear that they're 
resurrecting themselves and are starting to 
publish again. Among the first new Activi- 
sion releases arc Sargon V chess and 
Shanghai II. IBM versions will come first, 
of course. Activision also owns the Info- 
com label and will be releasing Leather 
Goddesses ofPhohos II. the follow up to 
one of the best adventures ever. (The origi- 
nal Leather Goddesses even had a scratch 
'n sniff card in the box. It was wonderfully 
vile.) We're pleased to hear all of this and 
we'll keep you posted on further develop- 
ments. 

HAM-E AND THE FCC 



We 



' e've recently received some 
reader inquiries about the FCC status of 
Black Belt Systems* HAM-E box. A check 
of the FCC's Public Access Link BBS 
revealed the following note regarding 
FCCID #100-EHAM (the number affixed 
to the HAM-E): "Current status: Marketing 
prohibited. This FCC ID is invalid." 

A call to the FCC representative in 
charge of this particular product revealed 
that Black Belt does not have an FCC certi- 
fication for the HAM-E, nor do they have 
an application on file. The FCC rep told 
.info, "We have the ID in our database 
because we've been made aware that there 
is equipment out there with that ID on it. 
The ID is in our database for tracking pur- 
poses only." She added, "The company has 
been sent the usual nolifieaton that this is a 
violation." When asked if this would affect 
the marketing of the product, she answered, 
"The equipment is not authorized by the 
FCC. They are not supposed to sell this 
product without the issuance of an FCC 
grant. They are in violation of the rules and 
communications act, and the company is 
subject to fines and forfeitures under the 
act." 

When contacted by .info, a spokesperson 
for Black Belt Systems told us. "We're not 
currently manufacturing |the HAM-E]. We 
haven't for months. It has to do with a non- 
disclosure agreement we've signed with 
Commodore. It has nothing to do with the 
FCC." The company would not elaborate 
beyond this statement. 

So where does that leave (he Amiga con- 
sumer? The point may be moot for Amiga 



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ABACUS BOOKS 
3D Graphs Prog In BASIC 

.ArnigaDOSQuck Reference ....... 

Buslol Amiga Tricks 1 Tipo .... 

C l&r Begmneis* 

C <9f AOvarOd ProgMmriipfS. 

[i»'.H;p Video Book 
Amga Beginner* Booh ..... 
Amiga Pnrrtors In.'Ou! Booh 
Amrja Banc lr. Out Book* 
An^fB Printers foOgl Book 
Arr gji Macnne Language ... 

Gr.aprwsln.Our Book. 

Ajj_oaDOS IftQ-t Boo* & Osk ... 

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ACCOUOE 

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ErVra rtrts .. 



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Graphics Studo 16 

Grand Pn« Circuit IB 

Guitboal , 32 

HardbaJ II 32 

Hovnnorce _ , 32 

UhaJo 89 

JackNiCkla_*Ur_*Ti,t»d 3a 

JNKklausCrsMoto 17 

Kr^jhis ol Crystjfcon 33 

Mean 18 S3* 

Munkw , 79 

Roto. , _„__ 

Sevcti for rhe King 33 

Shoct Em UpGonamKWXl 

Star Control 

Slraleoo 

StnkoAws 

Ta&l Driva II _ 

Cnlirorrii.'iChatang* 

European Crutifengo 

Super Car* 

Muscle C*s 

World Class Soccer 

AHTIC 



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2D 

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AHTWDRX 

Bridge 6.0 _U 

Ceiitrrroid S-aoaf-S 21 

Unkwrord Fiench 33 

Dnk*ord German ?0 

Linkawd Greek 20 

Unkmord Italian 20 

Li!*wo'd Spafwsh 

Puirta r/aiu 

SlnpPoksrHI 

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BETHtSDA SORWAHE 

DarrocWs 27 

Dragon- Larll 29 

Hockny Leaguer Sin .. _,.._._. 29 

■.V i, i ■ ■:"•.! : ■ t Hockey 2 35 

BRITANNICA 

Arrjiapaligra ,25 

Dosjgnaiaurus ... 32 

BRCQERBLND 

CarmenUSA 33 

Carm*a 'Europe 33 

Carmemi Time ._ 



■;:. :■■---;, 2-: 



Pro of Persia _27 

Ksse'a Farts; 27 

McGee -- 27 

WcGw -I the Fun F*r 27 

Pcbonary 7* 

Sim Cry 33 

Sim City Graphics #loi#2 24 

SimCiiy Ptanrwm Boot ..... '.I 

Sirtt Terrain Editor IB 

rVoifpaD* ™. . 3f 

S<m CHy Pcpulu:, B.iOO 44 

BYT. BY BYTE. 
Sculpt '40 Jr. - 

CADViSION IKI 

X__d3D - MO 

CAPCOM 
Dynasty Wan 3i 

CAPSTONE 

Home Alone ....-32 

frurr-p Castle II 32 



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CEKTHAL COAST 

Dos 2 Dos. ...... 35 

Guanvrhack ... 45 

Quarterback Tools 56 

CtNEMAWArU 

Arcade Fever 26 

Defender ot C<0*ni 15 

Three SloegM 13 

COMMODORE 

Amiga Logo 62 

Armgavt&on ,. , <H 

COMPUTE! BOOKS 
AmigaDOS RoEerence. Guide 22 

Eco^nsra Gutda'Armca 
Amiga Programmers Sudi 
Instde Amiga Grnph^A 
Elemoriiarv Amiga &_',< 
Mapping The Amian 

Allv.-L'itl.d >■■ l,.r;.lH,l 

KiQt - Bvi Amiga . 
Aro-ja Appticahons 
tslor-nd&ookol A.t_3_ 
COMEULTRQh 

doss .Dw»4 25 

DATA EAST 

ABC W*Je Wond Boimg 32 

Chamoer'5lSciUttr!K 32 

Cooiiouuni 31 

Drakhherr . 36 

Orakkhsn H-is , 13 

FullM«I.H]Ha"«l. . . ... 32 

Monday Might f oc t- <U .13 



MMMM 

T/_Bi Bt_S(er Rus 32 

DESIGNING MINOS 
Bflo i Back. -2 

CfKSwsrrj Consputbon 26 

Great Siates II 24 

Mdate East Wortd Tour ,«___.» 
Top Form &6 

DICITEK 

Dir»wii5 ..26 

Holo in Orra Muniarurn OaJI 26 

Hole m Ono Dnta -3 IS 

Targrsan p. 

OISCOWERY 

Hyhna 13 

D1SN_Y 

Argmarjon 5bj*0 . .. BO 

-Vecftnopfiotoa , 2B 

[Jck Tracy Advrjntuto- 26 

Duck Tales Z7 

Hare 1 Raising H-voc 32 

DP T50FTWAPE 

CopyistDTP 210 

KCS Level II v3.5 240 

TyjorCurj 6S 

KOR --, -, 195 

ELECTRONIC ARTS 

4D Boning ,., 34 

638A_acfcS__ _ 34 

633 AKac* Sub Hrti 12 

Aquanaul . 26 

BairfsTaJell IG 

EarctsTak III 33 

Bards 2 0* 3 Hrtj . ID 

BAT 34 



Baltlm Command 

Birds of Prey 

BJuoMax . . 



23 

33 



Chuck Yeager AFT II 29 

Crackoc-Mi _... . . 19 

Das Bool 34 

Oeiu»B Paml "V flfi 

DefeJiie Muse Comfjc-jon 55 

□aiuu Prtrt II 53 

F-29' Rfltakamr 34 

F;A-I8lnw;*ckv 'G 

Hard Nova M 

Harpoon . .40 

Harpooo Bj'tl.Su*. K' 0' J .1 

HarpoonSttntfrKjEd-Wr _* 

Hunt For PwJOc: Z^ 

Immortad . 3* 

tmpenijrn ... ?B 

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Scone General ot _ — 



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WE CARRY A COMPLETE LINE OF ACCESSORIES FOR YOUR COMPUTER-ASK FOR OUR FREE CATALOG 

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H 



NEWS 




I E W S 



The signatures 

of the 

developers of 

AmigaDos 2.04. 












Peter Cherna 
Chr Is Green 
David Juitod 

r Shan so 
Drysdale 
i Jatkson 
; Sugidtn 
Con i net z 
John Szucs 
Jay Dcneocin 
Charlie Heath 
John flatnuarin 
John Tnebes 
Joe Pi lino 






Dave etrnoudti 
frit Cotton 
Bll( Mauri" 
Kevin Klop 
h>d HcCo- L 
Mifce Sin 
m I .in Ham 
Paul J one: 
I wrence I 
John l.ucklm. . 
Hark Carton 
Bruce Drake 
ndati Leu in 
Hndrew fiercer 
Mary-CI I en Toebei 
find 



to *'-■- 



IS 



* Mk<ta {T 



Flndy Flnkel 
Ross Hlppely 
Dill Koester 

Biyie tfc&biTt 
Hart in lailfef e 
Jtrry lloranoff 
Dale Larson 
Jerry Cross on 
Fred Mitchell 
Alan Ui-mI:. 
Stu Ferguson 
Joe Katz 
Dan Meyer 
Dooq Walker 
The Rnlga 



Randell Jesup 
Da If Luck 
Carolyn Scheppner 
Bart wutebook 
Mart in Hunt 
Jeff Porter 
Greg fiiuler 
Jm* Q'Hara 
Jin Cooper 
Fred Fish 
Gordon Keener 
Leo Schwab 
Michael Utiilthrr 
Developers 



owners looking to buy a HAM-E now. It 
would be difficult to find one to purchase, 
since Black Belt says they are no longer 
manufacturing the unit. As for those who 
already own a HAM-E. FCC certification is 
probably not a major concern. Though it is 
the law that all electronic devices must 
obtain an FCC certification before being 
sold in (he U.S., this is merely to ensure 
that those products meet the interference 
standards set by the government. If you 
own a HAM-E and it*s not generating 
enough RF1 to affect your TV and radio 
reception (or that of your neighbors) you 
can probably just forget about it. Our guess 
is that this situation will probably cause 
more problems for Black Belt Systems than 
it will for their customers. We don'l envy 
anyone who has anything to hash out with 
Uncle Sam. 

AMIGA CREDITS 

I f you ever opened the case of an 
Amiga 1000 and looked inside the top lid, 
what you saw were the signatures of the 
machine's creators molded into the plastic. 
We always thought that was a nice touch. 
Now we've learned that the tradition has 
been continued in an unexpected place. If 
you look on the new 2.04 Installation disk, 
you'll find a drawer called 'Tools.' Open it 
and then select 'Show All Files' from the 
Workbench Window menu. Another drawer 
called 'Test' will appear (you'll probably 
have to scroll the window over to the right 
to find it). Open it and you'll find a full- 



screen-size icon made up of signatures; 
click on it and it resolves into a readable 
list. A lip of the .info chape au to each and 
every person on the list. 

SECRET MESSAGES 



re'd heard rumors thai 2.04 
contained some secret messages, and now 
we've learned how to display them. The 
method is simple, but will probably require 
the use of three hands. First, click on the 
Workbench window to activate it. While 
holding down the CTRL, Left-Shift, Left- 
Alt, Right-Alt. and Right-Shift keys on the 
keyboard, use the right mousebutton to pull 
down the first Workbench menu and select 
any item. Release the mousebutlon first, 
and then release all the keys on the key- 
board. Finally, pull down the same menu 
and select 'Last Message' to read the secret 
message in the screen title bar. Repeat this 
sequence with all seven selections in the 
first menu bar; each has a different mes- 
sage. Isn't this fun? 

AMIGA PIONEER DIES 



W. 



' e were saddened this month 
to learn of the death of a valued member of 
the original Amiga design team, one whose 
signature appeared inside the box lid of the 
A 1000. After a long and happy life, Mitchie 
the dog has passed on. Our sincere con- 
dolances to his friend and owner, Jay 
Miner, 



SPA REPORTS 

V V e recently received iwo 

press releases from the Software Publishers 
Association. The firsi announced "Esti- 
mated 1990 Loss to Piracy in Western 
Europe S4.3 Billion." The second, sent as a 
correction three days later, raised the figure 
to $4.46 billion. While we do concede that 
piracy is a major problem both here in the 
US and in Europe, we do quesiion the 
SPA's Figures. There are lots of numbers in 
the SPA reports, but they are vague on the 
methods used to arrive at them. To quote 
from the reports. "The piracy estimates are 
conservative, because the units of software 
sold is compared to the number of personal 
computers purchased in the same year. This 
disregards sales to users of older personal 
computers. Assuming that some of the cur- 
rent year software is sold for use on older 
machines, the ratio of software and hard- 
ware sold would decline, thereby reflecting 
a much larger estimated loss of piracy." 
Besides being based on specious logic, the 
explanations are Tar too vague to be consid- 
ered fact. We would estimate that the SPA's 
figures are noi, as they claim, conservative, 
but hugely inflated. The bottom line is, of 
course, that nobody can ever know what the 
losses are for sure. 

PRICE SLASHING 

I CD, makers of all sorts of 
Amiga hardware, have announced price 
cuts on virtually their entire product line. 
For example, the AdSpeed accelerator now 
lists for $209.96, the Novia 20i internal 
A 5 00 hard drive is $244.96. and the Flicker 
Free Video now retails for $299.96. For 
details on other products, contact 1CD at 
1 220 Rock Street, Rockford, IL61I01. 
815-968-2228. 

COMMODORE DISTRIBUTION 



Cc 



'ommodore tells us they've 
signed an agreement with Miami-based 
Creative Equipment International to market 
Amigas and CDTV in Latin America and 
throughout the Caribbean. CEI is in the 
process of establishing a network of over 
150 dealers throughout the region. 



lfl .info MARCH J992 



NEWS 




I E W S 



Jfifo fJPDATl 



THE OOPS FILE 

1/ In the Public Domain column in the 
February issue, Jeff Lowenlhal mis- 
quoted the subscription price for 
Enchanted Realms, the adventure gam- 
ing inagazine-on-disk. It really costs 
$49.95 for a one-year, six-issue subscrip- 
tion with disk. Contact: Digital Expres- 
sions, PO Box 33656, Cleveland OH 
44133,216-582-0910. 
/ Last issue, we were incorrect in stat- 
ing that the 68070 chip used in CD-I is 
from Motorola; it is actually manufac- 
tured by Signetics. However, we were 
right in stating that the chip is based on 
Motorola's 68000-family technology. 

MOVES 

/ In the WrapUp for the same February 
issue, we printed an incorrect phone 
number for The Disc Company, publish- 
ers of Harmoni, The reason (okay, it's an 
excuse, but we'll do anything we can to 
weasel out of any blame) is that the com- 
pany has recently moved. The new 
address is 1 1440 San Vicente Blvd., Los 
Angeles, CA 90049. The new phone 
numbers are 310-207-1600 voice, 310- 
820-8233 FAX. 

/ Digital Creations has moved to 160B 
Blue Ravine Road. Folsom, CA 95630. 
The phone number remains the same at 
916-344-4825. 

VERSIONS & REPAIRS 

J You may have heard that there is a 
new version of ASDG's Art Department 
Professional on the way. It was origi- 
nally intended to be a maintenance 
update, but ASDG is making it a much- 
enhanced release and numbering it 2.1.0. 
The Pre (Printer saver section of ADPro 
has eight new dithering methods added 
to it, so output even to dot matrix print- 
ers is much improved. There are also two 
entirely new features, FRED is an anima- 
tion frame editor that lets you organize 
the individual frames, which are reduced 
to icon-size and arranged into lists which 



can then be processed however you want 
with ADPro functions. FRED will also let 
you preview the animation before you out- 
put the frames to a single-frame recorder. 
FRED requires Kickstart 2.04 (the rest of 
ADPro will work under 1 .3). Other new 
features in 2. 1 .0 are roil and broadcast limit 
operators. The former speeds up the cre- 
ation of video transitions (like pushes, 
slides, and reveals), while the latter auto- 
matically corrects colors that can cause 
video problems. These broadcast limit 
operators can be based on NTSC, PAL. or 
user-defined parameters. The 2.1.0 update 
is free to registered owners of ADPro 
release 2 owners, and owners of version 1 
can upgrade for S75. If you're still back on 
the original Art Department, you can 
upgrade all the way to the top for SI 30. 
ASDG also has a new release of their Pro- 
fessional Conversion Park utility for read- 
ing and writing different graphic file for- 
mats. This latest version adds XI 1 and Sun 
formats, including alpha channel support 
for compositing operations. PCP sells for 
S90 and owners of the previous version will 
be updated as a part of the new ADPro revi- 
sion. 925 Stewart Street. Madison, WI 
53713.608-273-6585. 
</ Oxxi has released a new version of Aegis 
Draw 2000, Version 2.0 adds metric mea- 
surement, DXF in/out. parallel dimension- 
ing, PAL support, a PostScript output 
option, and a whole slew of keyboard 
equivalents. A few bugs have been swatted 
along the way, loo. Owners of previous ver- 
sions should contact Oxxi for upgrade 
details. PO Box 90309, Long Beach, CA 
90809.213-427-1227. 
/ Deltaware tells us they've fixed a couple 
of minor glitches in their A-Sound Elite 
editing software. The incompatibility with 
Aegis' SoitndMaster digitizer has been 
resolved (there was a problem toggling 
between microphone and RCA jacks) and a 
small problem in the record-to-disk func- 
tion when using Perfect Sound J. has been 
fixed. The update will be sent for free to 
registered owners. 3148 Kingston Road, 



Suite 202, Box 395, Toronto, ON Canada 
M1M 1P4. 4 16-43 1 -2047. 
/ Bill Hawes, the undisputed guru of 
ARexx, tells us that his company. Wish- 
ful Thinking Development (one of the 
all-time best company names) has 
released a new version of WShell. Ver- 
sion 2.0 now has console window 
menus, command history with a scroll- 
bar, iconic drag-and-drop operations for 
Workbench, and much more. WShell 2.0 
is specifically designed for Workbench 
2,0, but will also work under 1.3 with a 
reduced set of capabilities, 2.0 sells for 
S89. Contact Wishful Thinking for 
upgrade details. PO Box 308, Maynard, 
MA 01 754. 

/ Poor Person Software has revised 
Thinker, their hypertext engine, to ver- 
sion 2. 1 .4. This latest incarnation can 
treat any CD-ROM database as a hyper- 
text document, replacing searches with 
hypertext links. Contact PPS for more 
details on how that works - there are 
some interesting applications for it. 
Thinker's ARexx support has been 
extended and the user interface improved 
as well. Thinker 2.1.4 retails for S80 and 
registered owners can upgrade for SI 5. A 
bargain. 3721 Starr King Circle, Palo 
Alto, CA 94306. 4 15-493-7234. 
y There are several items from TTR 
Development. Their Diamond Store 20 
floptical drive system can now read and 
write 720K, 1 .44 meg, and 20 meg disks 
using the OFS or FFS file systems. 
TTR's WorkBench Management System 
has been updated to version 3.0. This is a 
complete rewrite in assembly code and it 
now supports programmable menus, 
hotkeys, scripts, and other nifty things. 
Finally, the company has formed an 
arrangement with RCS Management for 
exclusive US distribution of RCS' 
Fusion 40 68040 accelerator. To even 
things out, RCS will be handling Cana- 
dian distribution of TTR's Diamond Store 
20. 6701 Scybold Road, Madison, WI 
53719.608-277-8071. 



,infO MARCH 1992 19 



Hardware by Morton Kevelson 

Simple Speedup and 
Roll-Your-Own CD-ROM 




he typical Amiga 



developer, when presented with the 
Amiga's magnificence, has held back noth- 
ing. Applications such as raytracing or 3D 
modelling, which were never even 
attempted on eight-bit machines, have been 
routinely developed for the Amiga. Pro- 
grams that originally ran on a cryogenically 
cooled Cray were ported with reckless 
abandon to the Amiga. It is no wonder that 
the poor Amiga seems to barely keep up at 
times. 

More Speed 

The solution is obvious: install an 
accelerator. Accelerators are typically a 
68020 or 68030 microprocessor teamed up 
with a 68881/2 math coprocessor, with the 
clock speed cranked up to 12, 25, 33 Mhz 
or more. The latest accelerators are based 
on the 68040 microprocessor, which is a 
68030 and a 68882 on one chip. The only 
problem with this approach is that the typi- 
cal accelerator board costs more than the 
original computer. This is fine for the pro- 
fessional who can justify the added expense 
in exchange for increased productivity, but 
what about the rest of us? It turns out that 
those of us with modest means can also 
enjoy the benefits of more powerful pro- 
cessing. We just have to set our sights a lit- 
tle lower. 

To start with, we settle for a 68020 
microprocessor with a 68881 math copro- 
cessor. Then we run the system at the same 
clock speed as the slock Amiga. This setup 
does not give spectacular results, but you 



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can expect to see between a 50% to a 100% 
improvement for many operations as a 
result of the increased efficiency of the 
68020. It has an on-board RAM cache and 
it executes most instructions faster than the 
68000. (Refer to Jim Butterfield's article in 
.info #42 for more on this.) 

The concept of upgrading the micro- 
processor is by no means novel or unique. 
Way back in 1985, when the 68020 first 
appeared, Motorola encouraged developers 
to work with the new chip by developing a 
plug-in board that replaced the 68000 
microprocessor with a 68020 and 6888 1 . 
Up until 1988 or 1989, CSA still made and 
sold these "Piggyback Boards" directly to 
the Amiga community. 

Compatibility with the 68020 is not 
generally a problem, There is only one 
instruction on the 68020 that behaves dif- 
ferently on the 68000. Developers have 
been aware of what is needed to write 
68020/30 compatible code for years. Other 
than some games that were published dur- 
ing the first year of the Amiga's existence, 
there should be no commercial programs 
that cannot cope with a 68020. 

Sapphire 

With the Sapphire board. TTR Devel- 
opment has resurrected the original concept 
of the minimal accelerator plug-in board. In 



fact, if you place a TTR Sapphire alongside 
the original CSA Piggyback board, you will 
notice a strong resemblance between the 
two. 

Sapphire is a bit larger than three by 
four inches, with the square 68020/68881 
processors mounted side by side. Four PAL 
chips, a transistor, and a handful of resistors 
and capacitors complete the component 
count. The version I looked at was designed 
for the Amiga 2000. Its main circuit board 
was connected to a smaller extender board 
that plugged into the 68000 socket. The 
package includes a floppy disk which con- 
tains the installation instructions and a dis- 
posable grounding wrist strap. The latter is 
used to ground yourself to the computer's 
chassis, thereby discharging any static elec- 
tric charge that might damage the chips. 

A Few Difficulties 

I ran into some problems with the Sap- 
phire board. The first board I tried repeat- 
edly crashed the system about fifteen min- 
utes after power up. TTR indicated that a 
batch of PAL chips had thermal problems 
and replaced the board. The replacement 
board operated erratically until I removed a 
pull-up resistor which had been installed in 
my Amiga 2000 to to eliminate compatibil- 
ity problems I'd encountered with a 
memory board and a SCSI host adapter that 



20 .info MARCH 1992 



Hard 




are no longer a part of my system. Since I 
had a CSA Piggyback board on hand. I 
used it as a basis for comparison. The CSA 
board fiad no problems with the resistor in 
or out. 

In my tests, I ran into two software 
compatibility problems with the Sapphire. 
The first was was with the 68020 version of 
Natural Graphics* Scenery Animator, which 
simply crashed whenever 1 tried to load a 
data file. The second problem occurred 
when I attempted to revert back to ROM- 
based Kickstarl 1.3 after using Com- 
modore's RAM-based version of the Kick- 
start 2.0 ROM. Running the •Killzkiek' 
program crashed the computer to the point 
that it had to be powered down before it 
would reboot. Neither of these problems 
occurred with the CSA Piggyback board. 

Sapphire's 68020/68881 plug-in 
replacement concept is the least expensive 
way to install a math coprocessor in an 
Amiga system. With the exception of the 
two incidents mentioned above, the Sap- 
phire board performed as expected. If you 
need a 68881 math coprocessor with a min- 
imal investment, then the Sapphire is worlii 
considering. 

CD-ROM FS 

Although CD-ROM drives arc increas- 
ing in popularity among non-Amiga users, 
they are still relatively scarce as Amiga 
accessories. As of this time, you have three 
options when adding a CD-ROM to your 
system: CDTV (which doesn't really count, 
as it is a stand-alone product), the Xetec 
CD-ROM system, or you can roll your 
own. If you choose the latter course, you 
will have to assemble your own compo- 
nents starting with a SCSI host adapter and 
a hard drive at one end and a CD-ROM 
player at the other. You will also need a 
CD-ROM file system of some sort. The last 
requirement is not trivial. Although most 
CD-ROM players are SCSI peripherals, 
each one seems to have its own set of com- 
mands and idiosyncracies. Furthermore, the 
CD-ROM file system does not correspond 
to anything that the Amiga is used to seeing 
on a mass storage device. For example, 
CD-ROM data blocks arc 2048 bytes, as 
compared to AmigaDOS's 5 1 2 bytes. 

Two CD-ROM file systems are 
presently available to Amiga users: the 
Xetec system and CDROM-FS. which was 
developed by Canadian Prototype Replicas. 
The Xetec file system can be purchased for 
S99. The package includes Xetec 's CD- 



»Oe. "515488 fret tieiiory 




H 

XstecS 




u 

Xstecl 




y 

RAM DISH 


The CDDACtrl 


y 


program 


Extra 


plays an 


u 

Hainfart 


audio CD via 


CDROM-FS. 


JT 





ROM software and a copy of Fish & More 
Volume I . Keep in mind that the Xetec sys- 
tem is only guaranteed to work with the 
Chinon CDX-431 CD-ROM drive, 
although Xetec has indicated that some 
users have reported successful results with 
other drives. 

If for some reason you do not want a 
Chinon drive, then CDROM-FS is your 
only choice. The package consists of a 
floppy disk which contains the drivers that 
are installed in your L: and LIBS: directo- 
ries. An icon-driven installation script auto- 
matically copies the files to all the right 
places. You complete the installation by 
modifying the CD-ROM mountlist so that it 
accesses your SCSI host adapter's driver 
and your CD-ROM player's SCSI ID num- 
ber. The last step is to add a CD-ROM 
'mount' command to the end of your 
startup-sequence file. This last step is 
important. When I tried to mount the CD- 
ROM from the CL1. the system crashed. 
The CD-ROM must be mounted from the 
startup-sequence. 

The package includes an audio CD 
player program. CDDACtrl, which mimics 
the basic functions of a stand-alone audio 
CD player. CDDACtrl's extra features 
include user selection of tracks from an on- 
screen list and five time display modes. 

The Test 

I tested CDROM-FS on a Chinon CD- 
ROM player connected to a Xetec MitliFast 
card SCSI host adapter installed in an 
Amiga 2000. The system worked fine, with 
the exception of CDDACtri's left/right 
audio channel selection. All I could gel was 
stereo output. I was pleasantly surprised by 
the system's performance, inasmuch as 



Canadian Prototype Replicas is very defi- 
nite about the specific hardware that is sup- 
ported, and my system was not on the 'offi- 
cial' list. 

CDROM-FS version .701 complies to 
ISO9660 Level 2 Interchange. ISO9660 
Level I Implementation, and HiSierra 
Level 2 CD-ROM specifications. Interleave 
files are not supported, and the block size 
must be 2048 bytes. The version tested was 
released on May 16, 1991, and may have 
been updated since then. 

Officially, CDROM-FS supports the 
following CD-ROM drives with the Com- 
modore A590, A2091 , and A3000 SCSI 
controllers: Chinon CDX-431 (H42), 
Hitachi CDR-3650 (0006). Pioneer DRM- 
600 (0801), Sony CDU-541/621 1 (2.6a) 
[incompatible with A3000|, and Toshiba 
XM-3201B (3232). The Microbolics Hard- 
Frame works with all of these, as well as 
the NEC CDR-77,80,72,82 (000). Chinon 
and NEC drives require KickStart Version 
37.128 or greater to work with an A3000. A 
ROM upgrade may be required for 
A590/A209L [Numbers in parentheses are 
ROM versions.] 

The Panasonic CD-ROM is currently 
untested, and the Toshiba XM-5 100 and 
Hitachi CDR-l.i53 are known to be incom- 
patible with the CDDACtrl program. a 



CDROM-FS 

* ?■*-*+ 

$49.95 

H y perMedia Concepts 

5200 Washington Ave. Ste. 226 

Racine, Wl 53406 

414-632-3766 



.info MARCH 1992 21 



Buy The Right 
Thing 




by Arby Fuller 



little over a year ago, I had very 
interesting conversation with an 
Amiga developer who made the 
statement that the difference 
between European and American software 
buyers is that the Europeans buy only what 
they need to get (he job done, while Ameri- 
cans buy software that does everything 
imaginable and with functions they can't 
possibly ever need. That distinction has 
stuck in the forefront of my mind as one of 
the Great Truths of Computing. (Another is 
that if the power is going to go off, it will 
always do so when I'm saving a file.) 
While it's wonderful to have software with 
every function under the sun, the downside 
is that the more functions there are, the 
higher the cost. Developers have to make a 
profit to stay in business; that's one of the 
immutable laws of the universe. And when 
users demand highly sophisticated, over- 
functional software, they are going to have 



to pay for it. That's another unchanging law 
of the universe. All this has made me look 
al my own habits and to do some speculat- 
ing on the entire US software market. We 
have always been a nation of heavy con- 
sumers: it's a major pari of our ethic. We're 
taught from birth that more is always belter. 
Now, though, I'm seriously questioning the 
idea as it applies to computing. 

Being a computer user is a lot like being 
a two-year-old. All we know is 'gimme, 
gimme, gimme.' Il doesn't matter if that 
new toy is going to sit in the closet some- 
where and never be touched again. 'I want 
it and 1 want it now!' That was okay back 
when the toys I played with cost 59e\ Now 
the toys I play with are considerably more 
expensive, but I still have the same old atti- 
tude, Bui I'm trying lo change il. And 
maybe it's time that you took a long, hard 
look at exactly what you're doing with your 
computer. Think about what you plan on 
doing with il in the future, whal inlerests 
you and what doesn't, and then Formulate a 
plan for software and hardware acquisi- 
tions. If you have a plan and slick to it, you 
can save enough money to buy those won- 
derful things you'd love to expand your 
system with. 



— Bquartun -- ver 1.15 *** i BL OLSSCN 1989 *** 



Operative Text processing 



Utilities Cs leu I at ion 



Doc mentation Sinulation 



Tent processing; Graphics 



Calculation ' Sound 



Database Programing 



Cowiunication ' Diagnostics 



Intuition 



Subroutines 



Conversion 



Enhancenents 



AssenMv 



Basic 



NoduU 



Searching for 
interesting 
(and free!) 
Fish Disk 

applications 

with 
Aquarium. 



Sane 


flnlnation Kernal D0S2.8 ! Host Current 


it 

ie: 








*■ * 1/yiiA, rK ^. >. V 5 


<t: 





^l^xfl ifJLd 



fl smple database progr» using an intuition interface, 
Stores, sorts and searches for information. United to 
9 fields in each record, Features include fast sorting, 
search in any field, and best of all, it's realty easy to 
use. This is version 5, an update to version 1 on disk 
491. and is nticn mproved. Binary only, 
(tutnor: Robert Bronley 



The Amiga community has long been in 
a unique position. We consistently pay less 
for software and hardware than our coun- 
terparts who own Macs and IBM clones. 
However, as the Amiga becomes more and 
more mainstream, we're likely to see prices 
going up and commercial software becom- 
ing less and less accessible for home users. 
Let's lake a look at some ways to get the 
most value from what you spend. 

The Basic Home Setup 

We're going to assume here a hardware 
setup that includes an Amiga 500, one 
external floppy drive, a medium-sized hard 
drive (let's say 40 megabytes), and one 
meg of RAM. This is a nice, functional sys- 
tem. We'll assuine you don't have a printer 
yet, and before you buy one ask yourself 
whether you really need a printer. If you do 
any academic work, the answer will be 
'yes' and 'sooner' rather than 'later.' But if 
all you intend lo do is to print a few letters 
lo relatives, a primer should probably be a 
long way down on your list of priorities. 
One tendency you'll have to fight if you're 
a newcomer to computing is that you're 
used to reading everything on paper; you 
need to train yourself lo do your reading 
on-screen instead. You'll even save a few 
trees in the process. We'll get back to the 
printer issue a little later. 

Most people think they immediately 
need four basic things in their home soft- 
ware libraries: a wordprocessor, a spread- 
sheet, a database manager, and a paint pro- 
gram. Maybe, maybe not. First, assess your 
needs. Chances are that you don't really 
need more than one or two of these prod- 
ucis. There are alternatives. 

Wordprocessors are as personal as tooth- 
brushes. They're also considerably more 
expensive. There are three basic flavors: 
text editors, text-only wordprocessors with 
print functions, and wordprocessors with 
graphics capabilities. As in everything else, 
ask yourself what kind of writing you're 
going to do. If you're only going to write 
letters, edit your startup-sequence, and 
knock off a few paragraphs of notes, then 
you don't need a wordprocessor at all. You 
can gel by handily with a public domain 
text editor. At the opposite end of the scale, 



22 .info MARCH 1992 



if you write complicated reports, long 
pieces of text with indexes and footnotes, 
or documents that need elaborate format- 
ting, you'll need either a combination of a 
wordprocessor and page layout software or 
a heavyweight wordprocessor like Word- 
Perfect ($250). Chances are. though, that 
your needs fall somewhere in the middle. 
Then there are two paths to take. If you 
iloif [ need [o include graphics or use a vari- 
ety of fonts, something like Gold Disk's 
TransWrite ($69.95) is what you need. It 
will give you good, fast editing with ade- 
quate print features. If you do need graphic 
and font capability, then I would recom- 
mend New Horizons" ProWrite, Soft- 
Wood's Final Copy (S99.95) or - particu- 
larly if you need foreign language capabil- 
ity - Centaur's Personal Write ($49.95 ). 
(Editor's Note: The examples given in this 
article arc just that: examples. There are 
many other excellent Amiga products 
available that would also meet your needs.] 

Commercial spreadsheets and database 
managers arc luxuries for most people. 
Unless you're doing complex financial 
planning and maintaining a mailing list 
with order tracking information, there are 
public domain utilities that will probably do 
what you need faster and more easily. 
Spreadsheets are enormously complex crea- 
tures, and lo use one for balancing your 
checkbook or planning a home budget is 
overkill. The same goes for database man- 
agers. If you're simply cataloging your CD 
collection, then buying Superbase Profes- 
sional and spending the time to learn it and 
program it is probably a waste of both time 
and money. 

But Ihere is one product you do need lo 
buy immediately: Deluxe Paint IV. No 
Amiga should be without it. It is the defini- 
tive paint program, and if you have any 
appreciation a( all for your Amiga's ability 
to display color, you just can't be without 
it. Even if you're not an artist, you'll find 
lots of practical uses for DPaini. It can han- 
dle simple video titling, animation, and 
even some 'multimedia' duty. 

lipping the Ante 

I've mentioned public domain software a 
couple of times now and that's the next 
thing we need lo consider. The Amiga has 
an enormous amount of PD software 
available for it and there are two ways to go 
about obtaining it: downloading or buying 
individual disks. There are a number of PD 
vendors who sell disks of PD software at $2 
a disk on up. This is unquestionably the 
best way to start out. The vendors have 
alreadv stone through the effort of sorting 




Creating a 

video title 

animation with 

Deluxe Paint IV. 



ou! and categorizing the programs. They 
usually have catalogs thai include descrip- 
tions, making the process of finding what 
you want much easier. 

The champion compiler of Amiga PD 
software is, of course, Fred Fish. He has 
produced, as of this writing, over 580 disks 
full of PD software and Shareware. In fact, 
he is so prolific and has been doing this for 
so long thai most Amiga PD software is 
commonly referred to by the number of the 
Fish Disk that contains it. The best way to 
explore the contents of these disks is by 
using the PD Fish Disk database program 
Aquarium, which is itself on Fish Disk 
#559. We suggest you pick up a copy of 
this program and set yourself looking 
through the thousands of programs that are 
available in the Fish Disk scries. 

If you find that PD software fills your 
needs, you'll probably eventually want lo 
starl downloading the stuff from a BBS or 
one of the online services. To do that, 
you'll need a modem and telecommunica- 
tions software. Before you get into it, 
though, weigh the costs very carefully. A 
2400-baud modem will set you back 
between SI 00 and $200. You can get 
modems that are faster, but there are so few 
services that support speeds higher than 
2400 that it's really not worth the exlra 
expense. Don't even think about buying 
commercial telecommunications software, 
ai least al first: there are abundanl PD titles 
available and most are excellent. Here at 
.info, we use COMM and VLT, both PD 
and more than adequate for our needs. On 
lop of the modem, you will also have lo 
decide whether you want to use one (or 
more) of ihe commercial online services 
such as Portal. GEnie, CompuServe, BIX. 
and so on. The prices these companies 
chaise for connect time, downloads, and 



other services has been coming down 
steadily and I think we can expect them to 
come down even more in (he future. The 
courts have recently ruled thai phone com- 
panies can now provide information ser- 
vices, something they had been prohibited 
from doing after the breakup of Ma Bell. 
That means more competition and lower 
prices for us. Local bulletin boards (BBSs) 
frequently have good software collections, 
though it may take a good deal of searching 
to find one you like that has the software 
you want, and isn't so highly specialized 
that it will be of minimal use. BBSs arc 
also hard to come by in rural areas; you can 
wind up spending a fortune in long-distance 
charges unless you have access lo some- 
thing like Tymnei or PC Pursuit The 
advantages to using one of the commercial 
networks are lhai you'll have access to the 
latest PD titles, you can take advantage of 
additional services BBSs can't offer, you 
can be assured that what you're download- 
ing is virus-free and not pirated, and you 
can download individual lilies rather than 
ordering a PD disk that may contain things 
you don't want. Before you gel into 
telecommunications, investigate the com- 
plete cost, including the modem, connect 
lime, download surcharges, and phone 
charges. Compare this with the cost of 
commercial PD disks. 

Perhaps the best source of PD software is 
your local Amiga user group. If [here's one 
in your area, you'll find that one of its most 
useful services is its library of PD disks. 
These are usually available for copying just 
for Ihe price of a blank disk. 

Getting Into Video 

Video isn'i cheap. It requires hardware, 
sophisticated software, and more hardware. 
The one basic hardware requirement for 



.infO MARCH 1992 23 



Amiga video work is a genlock. There are a 
number of ihem on the market, though 
many are priced out of the reach of the 
average home user. The first thing to do is 
check around for a used one. Failing that, 
you'll have to bile the bullet and buy a new 
one. This is another case of balancing price 
and performance. Don't buy more genlock 
than you absolutely need. For home use, a 
box with video-in and composite-out is all 
that's really required. Creative use of soft- 
ware can make up for mosl of the functions 
of more sophisticated devices. DPainl can 
take the place of titling software; all you 
need to do is create an animation with the 
background set to 'Color 0' and enter the 
text on individual frames. Wipes and dis- 
solves can be simulated with full-screen 
images. You can do your editing by hand. It 
may not be perfect, but for most things it's 
perfectly acceptable. There really isn't 
much PD video software available, though 
there are a few titles appearing. There arc 
lots of commercial video utilities, but 
they're usually expensive and aimed at the 
video professional. A notable exception is 
Gold Disk's new Video Director. It's 
designed to work with consumer-grade 
video equipment and its $199.95 retail 
price may bend your budget a little, but 
won't break it. Again, analyze exactly what 
you need to do and base your decision on 
(hat, not what dazzles you. 



Getting Into Print 

A printer is one of the most expensive 
additions you're likely to make to your sys- 
tem. There are so many on the market that 
picking the right one for your needs is next 
to impossible. A laser printer will give you 
the best output, but it's also far beyond the 
financial reach of most home users. If 
you're moonlighting with some desktop 
publishing, then give a PostScript printer 
some thought, though even then it would be 
wise to investigate renting or leasing 
instead of buying. There are real bargains 
in dot matrix printers, but their print quality 
leaves much to be desired, particularly 
those at the lowest end. As I said above, try 
to train yourself to do without hardcopy 
printouts of program listings, directories, 
and other disposable print. It's not just eco- 
logically better to not waste a bunch of 
paper on printouts that will be looked at 
once or twice and then thrown away, it's 
also much cheaper to read such things 
onscreen. If you decide you really do need 
a high quality printer, the HP DeskJet is 
probably your best bet. You'll pay only 
slightly more for one than for an impact 
dot-matrix printer, and you'll get output 
that compares very favorably to laser print. 
With the right software, like the public 
domain interpreter Post, you can even have 
PostScript capability. 



Getting By With Less 

You can't always get what you want... 
To paraphrase Mick Jagger, you generally 
get what you need if you're willing to do 
enough work. Learning to do more with 
less is a highly creative process. You may 
have to sacrifice some time, but you'll save 
money in the long run. What all this means 
is (hat commercial software developers 
have only responded to what users have 
demanded, If we stop insisting on huge 
numbers of gee-whiz features that we'll 
only rarely or never use, then developers 
can concentrate more of their efforts on 
making the basic software better, more 
reliable, and easier to use. The more com- 
plicated a piece of software is, the more 
likely it is that something will go wrong. 
I'm not saying that you shouldn't buy com- 
mercial software, because you should. But 
evaluate your needs first. By making do 
with capable hut less than full-featured 
software in one area, you can often save 
enough to allow you to buy something bet- 
ter than you ordinarily would for another 
area of your computing. Buy commercial, 
but buy smart. Use your Amiga, don't lei it 
use you. 



Things to do Before You Buy, and One After 

D Make a list of exactly what you use your computer for and the software you do it with. 

:: Make another list of what you would like to be able to do with your machine and the software you would like 

to use to do it. 
:; Ask yourself if anything from the first list can be adapted to accomplish what's on the second. 
D Is there any PD software available that can be used for making things on the first list easier, and the items 

on the second list possible? 

If you're thinking about replacing one application with another one, ask yourself if the new title will give you 

a real advantage in time or capability, or whether you just want it because it's new, 
3 Think about the staying power of whatever you're considering buying. Realistically, will you still be using it 

on a regular basis six months from now? 
:; Do you know precisely what a new piece of software does and exactly how it can be used for what you 

want to do? Don't buy something for only one function without exhaustive checking to find out if there's 

another way to do it. Write to the publisher to get all the available information on the product. (Reader 

service cards are one way to simplify getting the information.) 
:> Have you comparison shopped? Are you buying at the best price and from the best source? If you think 

you're going to need help, especially if what you're buying is hardware, buy from a dealer. If you're 

reasonably certain you won't need any help, mail-order can save you money. 
3 Don't buy on impulse. If you see something you think you have to have, force yourself to wait at least 24 

hours. 
5 Learn the intimate details of what you do buy. Learning to use software well will often reveal alternative 

uses and expand its value. 



24 .info MARCH 19V2 



s 



cala 500 



by Tom Malcom 



Scala is one of the more impressive video 
titling products on the market, but its S395 
pricetag and memory requirements have 
kept it limited to the professional audience. 
Digital Visions, the European developer, 
has now released Scala 500, a scaled-down 
version for the rest of us. It's likely to be 
the only video titler you'll use until you get 
your new video studio built out in the back 
yard and [hen learn how lo use it. 

I have to emphasize here that Scaki 500 
is for home users and it possesses the usu- 
ally scarce virtues of simplicity, utility, and 
quality. It's not designed to be used in a 
professional environment, but it is far and 
away the best tiller I've seen for home use. 
While video titling is the primary use for 
Scala 500, it can also be used to create 
slideshows and presentations. (It lacks the 
animation support and interactive features 
of its older sibling, but most people don't 
need or want them.) 

Scala 500 is a page-based system, mean- 
ing that you create a series of separate 
screens containing text and/or graphics 
which are chained together inio a complete 
presentation. The layout of the program is 
logical and simple: you first choose a back- 
ground (which can also be transparent if 
you're using a genlock), enter the text you 
want lo appear on it, choose a transition to 
the next screen, and then repeat the process. 
Scala 500 comes with two disks of back- 
grounds, graphics, and fonts to get you 
started. This is the only disappointment I 
had with Scala 500 - the backdrops for the 
original Scala are far better and I'd like to 
see GVP make them available separately or 
as an upgrade. 

Text handling is the easiest and most ver- 
satile I've seen in a titling package. There 
are four fonts designed for video use 



■ 

Scala 500 
$149.00 

GVP 

600 Clark Avenue 

King of Prussia, PA 19406 

215-337-8770 




For amateur 

videographers, 

I can't 

recommend 

Scala 500 

highly 

enough. 



included in the package, though I've had no 
trouble using any of the bitmap fonts in my 
collection, The program will also resize 
fonts and while it does it quite well, this 
version of Scala doesn't support anti- 
aliasing, so you may run into some jaggi- 
ness. Some care in font and color selection 
will minimize any problems, though. Enter- 
ing the text is just like using a wordproces- 
sor, with scttable margins, justification, and 
automatic wordwrap. If you need to, the 
cursor can be repositioned with a 
mouseclick. 

There's a pop-up menu for configuring 
dropshadows, 3D effects, text attributes, 
and outlines however you want and the 
changes you make take effect immediately. 
Changing color is as easy as clicking on a 
palette bar, which is always onscreen and 
accessible. You can import brushes to drop 
onto the screen, though it took me a few 
minutes (and the only trip I had to make to 
the finely done manual) to figure out how 
to get text to overlay a graphic, but that's 
easy, too. Both lines of text and the graph- 
ics are actually in boxes onscreen and the 
boxes can be made visible to make it easier 
to drag them around the screen if you need 
to adjust the positions more precisely. It's 
so easy and fast to lay in graphics and enter 
and edit text, though, that 1 usually just start 
over if I don't like the way a page turned 
out. 

Once you have the page finished, a 
mouseclick adds it to the master list, where 
you can add a transition to the next page 
and a liming delay if you want one. If you 



need to, the pages can be easily rearranged 
just by dragging them around in the list. 
The choices for transitions are excellent, 
among the best and most visually interest- 
ing this side of the Toaster, After you've 
created a series of pages, you can then tell 
Scala 500 to run the whole presentation; it 
can be run cither automatically from the 
timing information you've provided or 
advanced from one page to the next with a 
mouseclick, which makes it especially easy 
to genlock text exactly when you want over 
video. That brings me to another of Scala 
500'$ primary virtues: it is extremely fast. 
You don't have to wait around twiddling 
your thumbs while it renders a screen. If 
you want to, you can slam them in nearly 
as fast as you can click the mouse. There's 
also provision for continuous text scrolling, 
though it requires you to enter the text by 
hand on a series of screens and then set it in 
motion. I'd rather be able to import a text 
file, but the editing functions are easy 
enough to use that I don't mind. 

For video amateurs like me. Scala 500 is 
the perfect video titler. It lets me get the job 
done with a minimum of effort and has 
enough snappy features to add some flash 
to the finished production. It is one of those 
rare pieces of software that is always polite 
and considerate of the user. It makes my 
video look professional with neither the 
pricetag nor the aggravation of learning a 
do-it-all titling package. For amateur video- 
graphers, I can't recommend Scala 500 
highly enough. 



.infO MARCH 1992 25 



Knit Editor 



by Tom Malcorm 



What this review is about is how to get 
yourself a free sweater. Before you read 
any further, make sure you're alone. We 
don't want our intended benefactor to know 
what we're up to just yet. Chances are that 
you live with someone who knits, are 
related to someone who knits, or at least 
know someone who knits. If you stop and 
think about it. computer displays and 
sweaters have a lot in common. Screens are 
made up of individual pixels and sweaters 
are made of lots of individual stitches; the 
correlation is clear. The problem is simply 
translating one to the other. You can come 
up with all kinds of nifty designs on-screen, 
but getting them into sweater format is a lit- 
tle trickier. Thai's where Cochenille's Knit 
Editor comes in. It will let you take any lo- 
res IFF screen or brush and perform the 
necessary operations on it to convert it into 
something our intended vicli . . ., I mean 
knitter can make you a sweater from. 

The basic operation starts with importing 
a graphic to work on. It must be an IFF lo- 
res image in 32 colors or less. The first 
thing Knit Editor does is reduce the number 
of colors to a manageable level. (Changing 
yarn color isn't quite as easy as picking a 
new color from a palette requester.) Pro- 
jects are going to be much easier if you 
design the initial graphic in only 4 or 8 col- 
ors. Knit Editor can handle up to 20 colors, 
but most knitters can't. Once the color 
reduction is done (and it works quite well) 
Knit Editor pixelizes the image based on 
the stitch size you specify. A smaller stitch 
size means more detail, but more work for 
the finished project, You'll want to check 




Composite 
screen showing 
the raw graphic, 
gridded image, 

and 

palette/symbol 

map. 



with your knitter to find out what gauge 
(stitch size) to use. At this point, you can 
adjust (he palette for the color scheme you 
want and then print the result as a symbolic 
chart. These charts are what the knitter uses 
to make the sweater, with each symbol rep- 
resenting a different color of yam. For 
some strange reason, this seems to work 
much better than a color chart. The entire 
process, from loading the graphic to print- 
ing the result, lakes a couple of minutes. 
However, our knitter doesn't need to know 
that. Let's make it seem like a long, hard 
process so we can get a little sympathy and 
make our knitter a little more likely to 
swallow our bait. That bait is that if our 
knitter will make us a sweater, we'll design 
another one to the knitter's own specifica- 
tion sforfreei Is that underhanded or what? 
Of course it is, but here I am wearing my 
nice new sweater with the .info logo and 



Requester 

for 

adjusting 

stitch size. 




I'm not a bit ashamed of what I've done. 

Knit Editor is a little awkward to use at 
times. The file requester is old-fashioned 
and an image cropping functionis sorely 
needed, but overall it does get the job done 
and it does it accurately, which is the most 
important thing. Cochenille also has a cou- 
ple of other products designed to aid in the 
knit design process. The first is a tutorial 
book. Designing Knits on Your Home Com- 
puter ($28), with an accompanying disk. 
Tt's very well done, thorough, and filled 
with practical examples. At the high end, 
there's also Bit Knitter (S499), which con- 
sists of software and an interface that will 
let you hook your Amiga directly to an 
electronic knitting machine and drive it 
directly from your on-screen design, If we 
can work our little con job on someone 
with one of these, we can score a whole 
new wardrobe of sweaters. 

One last thing - if you tell my mother 
about what I've done, I'll find out where 
you live and I won't show any mercy. 



KNJT EDITOR 
+ 

$110.00 

Cochenille Computer 
Knit Products 

PO Box 4276 

Encinitas, CA 92024 

619-942-1957 



26 .info MARCH 1992 



This printer looks like a DeskJet 500, and if 
you plug a black ink cartridge into it, it acts 
like a DeskJet 500. But if you plug in a 
three-color cartridge, it becomes a color 
printer with an incredible price/performance 
ratio. 

Hewlett-Packard's DeskJet 500C has a list 
price of $1095, but we've seen it selling as 
low as $695. That's the cost of a black-and- 
white laser printer with the same 300 dpi 
print resolution. So if you've got seven hun- 
dred bucks to spend on a printer, now you've 
got two 300 dpi choices: b&w laser or color 
Inkjet. 

I've always thought that the original 
DeskJet 500\ output was superb when you 
compared it to the output from a laser printer 
costing more than twice as much. When you 
consider that the 500C delivers 300 dpi in 
color for about 1/10 the price of a color laser 
printer, it is even more of a bargain. 

Output 

With either of the DeskJet printers, you 
may notice an occasional slight banding 
that you wouldn't see in a laser printer's 
output. But this is barely noticeable, and 
can be optimized using Amiga Preference 
controls for 'shingling.' This - and faster 
thruput - is what you're paying the extra 
money for when you buy a laser printer. 

The DeskJet SOOCs color is excellent, 
with bright yellows and reds and brilliant 
blues and greens. Output on standard laser 
paper is good, though we got much better 
results with clay-coated PaintJet paper. We 



DeskJet 500C 



HP DeskJet 500C 
$1095.00 

Hewlett-Packard 

16399 W. Bernardo Dr. 
San Diego CA 921 27 

800-752-0900 

Super_DJC 
$50 (introductory: $35) 

Creative Focus 

PO Box 580 

Chenango Bridge NY 13745 



by Mark R, Brown 




recommend the former for proofing and the 
latter for high-quality final output At 300 
dpi. it's almost impossible to see the color 
dithering that produces so many colors 
from just three inkjets. Yes, I said three. 
The 500C is a CYM printer, not CYMK 
like Hewlett-Packard's lower-resolution 
180 dpi PaintJet. This means that when you 
use the color cartridge the image is built up 
of cyan, yellow, and magenta inks, with no 
black. Black is created using a combination 
of all three inks. Ink buildup in dark areas 
thus becomes a concern, and blacks are 
something more like a deep, dark brown 
than a true black. This was one of our 
major concerns before we unpacked the 
500C; we didn't think we'd be satisfied 
with the resulls. But the printer fooled us, 
producing very acceptable dark shades. 
There is some tendency to 'muddy up' in 
dark areas, and the blacks are not as black 
as we'd like, but the overall quality of the 
output has exceeded our expectations. 
We've been using the DeskJet 500C for 
color proofing with very good resulls. We 
still believe in the superiority of CYMK 
output, and eagerly await a color DeskJet 
printer with four inks instead of three. But 
until thai day comes, the 500 C docs a very 
good job. 

Software Drivers 

Of course, the capabilities of the printer 
are nothing without Amiga Preferences 
support. And support for the DeskJet 500C 
is being provided both by Commodore and 
by Creative Focus. Commodore's new 
DeskJet printer driver (we were still using a 
beta version as this review went to press) 
includes many new options for the 500C, 
including control of shingling, or how 
much overlap there is in primed lines. Get- 



Hewlett-Packard's 

impressive new 

300 dpi color 

inkjet printer, the 
DeskJet S0OC. 



ting decern color printouts relics heavily on 
how your software calculates the output, as 
well as the combination of a great many 
settings in Preferences. The settings are 
much more complex than they are for a 
monochrome printer, and some of the selec- 
tion buttons are used in non-standard ways. 
Bui, as the IIP 500C driver documentation 
says: "Basically, set threshold to 10, den- 
sity to 7, dither to halftone, turn red color 
correction OFF, green and blue color cor- 
rection ON, and forget about it. Graphics 
will print out great all the time." Though 
this is a bit optimistic, in general it seemed 
to work well. 

But we got even better resulls with the 
beta version of a more ambitious printer 
driver from Creative Focus. Though the 
Super_DJC driver will cost you money, it 
offers a great deal more control over the 
printer. This means, among oilier things, 
that the Preferences controls do even more 
non-standard things than the Commodore 
driver. So with either of these drivers it's 
extremely important to know what thai but- 
ton, slider, or gadget really does before you 
touch it. Bcnn tried both drivers with Pro- 
fessional Page, Deluxe Paint IV, and Art 
Dept. Professional 2.0, and came away a 
believer in the Creative Focus driver. 
Though ihe Commodore driver worked just 
fine, the Creative Focus driver really shows 
off the DeskJet 500C in its best light. 

What to Buy? 

So should you get a 500C or a laser 
prinier? If you bought your Amiga for its 
color capabilities and have been anxious io 
gel the same high quality color in your 
printouts thai you gel on your screen, then 
the DeskJet 500C is what you've been 
wailing for. 



.infO MARCH 1992 27 



CYBERPLAY by Tom Malcom 

Sequels, Returns, and a Trip 
on the Obsess-0-Matic 




. hings are Keating up 
in Amiga gaming, The Amiga is the 
number-two platform in computer games 
and publishers are converting more IBM 
games to Amiga format and they're doing it 
much sooner than in the past couple of 
years. Isn't respectability (and profitability) 
a wonderful thing? This month's games are 
a mixed bag: everything from the return of 
our favorite polyester-clad dweeb to a trip 
to Middle Earth to the verge of an obses- 
sive/compulsive disorder with a seemingly 
simple little boardgame. 

LEISURE SUIT LARRY 5 

Sierra 

PO Box 485 

Coarsegold, CA 93614 

209-683-6858 

The ultimate dork is back and I'm sur- 
prised at how much I've missed him. Larry 
Laffer and Passionate Patti are back in the 
first new adventure I've seen from Sierra in 
quite a while. This one, subtitled Passion- 
ate Patti Does a Little Undercover Work, is 
just as vulgar, as filled with double- 
entendres, and as uproariously funny as the 
earlier entries in the series. In fact. I think 
this is the funniest of the lot. The plot has 
Larry working in Hollywood for a game 
show called America's Sexiest Home 
Videos, whose producer sends him off to 
check out the three candidates for the 
show's hostess job. The game skewers the 
entertainment industry with some deli- 
ciously on-target jabs and even takes a few 
swipes at computer games, including 
Sierra's own, in the process. (There is, by 
the way. no LSL 4, but you'll have lo see 
LSL J to find out why.) 

In the past. I've criticized Sierra for their 
poor graphics and interminably slow play. 
Well, I have good news and bad news. The 
graphics are considerably better than in 
anything I've seen from Sierra. They're up 




Larry's back 
and as 

obnoxious 

as ever in 

Sierra's 

Leisure Suit 
Larry 5. 



to using 32 colors now, and while there's 
still some IBM-type dithering, the overall 
look is more artful than before. What used 
to come across as amateurish has evolved 
into much more of a style. It's cartoony, but 
effective. The music and sound effects are 
top-notch and one of my favorite bits was 
finding Larry's 8-track tape player (he's 
having a little trouble finding new car- 
tridges for the thing), which lets you play 
different pieces of music from the game. 
The bad news is that the game speed still 
isn't nearly what it should be. The anima- 
tion is improved, and many of the charac- 
ters have distinctive walks that will have 
you rolling on the floor in laughter, but they 
still don't move fast enough. The biggest 
problem, though, is the long wait between 
scenes. There have even been a few occa- 
sions when (he game just hangs while load- 
ing a scene, requiring either a reboot or 
reloading a saved game. 

Sierra's most radical change with this 
release is the elimination of any typing. AH 
action is now accomplished via smart icons 
and pointing and clicking. You can still use 
the keyboard for movement, though I can't 
imagine why anyone would want to. The 
system works quite well, though I did run 



across an occasional instance where the 
game either refused to respond or 
responded inappropriately. However, these 
were minor annoyances and I was able to 
restore a saved game and continue on. I 
think as Sierra refines the interface, it will 
become one of the better game control sys- 
tems around. 

Much as I enjoyed LSL 5, it's really less 
of a game than a semi-interactive comic 
book, There are very long sections that 
involve no interaction at all; they're mostly 
expository and while they are funny and 
entertaining, they should have been acceler- 
ated considerably. The one thing I love 
most about the game is the fact that it 
doesn't take itself (or Sierra, for that mat- 
ter) seriously. Its primary purpose is to give 
the player a few good yuks and it succeeds 
splendidly at it. The writers aren't afraid to 
use every cheap, vulgar joke they can work 
in and I admire them for it. (By the way, 
since this is very definitely an adult game 
and if you're worried about your kids get- 
ting into it, there's optional password pro- 
tection.) Dig out your gold chains, run your 
polyester disco suit through the washer, and 
join Larry and Patti for some laughs. It's 
worth the effort. 



Incredible Very Good Average Poor Drek 



-I,. A, ,>,. ->„— I- 
r< r< /k J% rC. 



f\ r\ ^ pi 






£ k 



7k 



28 .infO MARCH 1992 




CYBBTPLAY 



CELTIC LEGENDS 

f\ r\ /< /v ^p 

UBISoft/EA 

1450 Fashion Island Blvd. 

San Mateo, CA 94404 

415-571-7171 

I don't know where UBISoft found 
Pierre Fallard, lire artist who did Celtic 
Legends, but I hope they had Ihe foresight 
to sign him to a long-term contract. I lis 
work is marvelous, highly detailed, and 
beautifully stylized in the Celtic manner. A 
few months ago, UBISoli released Buttle 
Isle, an unusually well done hex-grid 
wargamc. Celtic Legends is a variation on 
that theme. It's still basically a hex-grid 
game, but instead of tanks and howitzers, 
your armaments consist of magic spelts. It's 
highly interesting and probably the best 
hex-grid game I've ever seen. It's easy to 
get the hang of, plays at a reasonably fast 
clip, and has enough depth to keep you 
coming back for more. Control is mostly 
via icons and I found that the whole inter- 
face quickly became transparent. 

With Celtic Legends, 1 think UBISoft has 
found a way to bring strategy/wargaming 
inlo mainstream gaming. Until now, I've 
always found the genre rather dry. but 
Celtic Legends adds so much pizazz and 
polish that I may become a convert. 

LEANDER 

Psygnosls 

29 Saint Mary's Court 

Brookline, MA 02146 

617-731-3553 

I'm starting to really hate Psygnosis. 

They release a continual stream of new 

games and, being the weak-willed sold thai 




Waging a battle 

of spells 

(and wits) 

in UBISoft's 

Celtic Legends. 



I am. I have to boot them up immediately. 
The next thing I know, it's three o'clock in 
the morning, the dog has been squirming 
and whining to go out for the last six hours 
(so have I, for that matter), my back hurts 
from sitting in the same position for so 
long, and I can't pry my atrophied lingers 
from the joystick without a crowbar. 1 hate 
it. 

I've been hating Leandcr for a couple of 
weeks now. I've only made it to the fifth 
level, but it's one of those games thai won't 
let me rest until I've finished it. While it 
isn't on a par with Beast or Awesome, Lean- 
der is a very fine arcade adventure with 
typically perfect Psygnosis graphics. It has 
a Japanese flavor to it (there are even 
Japanese characters on the cover) and it 
fairly screams 'Super Nintendo," which is 
doubtless where it will wind up. There's the 
usual plot about rescuing a princess from 
some evil creature, but as is the way with 
these games, the plot is irrelevant. The play 
is everything. 



Another 

Psygnosis 

lime-eater, 

Leander 

is in the 

Super-NES 

arcade 

adventure vein. 




While Leander is one of Psygnosis" most 
accessible releases, it also has some of their 
old, unlanicnted quirks like atomic copy 
protection and no save option. There's an 
initial configuration menu that will let you 
select from several difficulty levels and set 
other options, giving beginners the opportu- 
nity to learn how things work. Leander uses 
code words rather than having a save func- 
tion, but they aren't given often enough. 
Much as I like playing Leander, I'm really 
tired of the first four levels since I've had 
to fight my way through them every time I 
want to try the fifth. 

If only Psygnosis would do a bad game 
now and then! I wouldn't be in so much 
pain, the dog might like me again, and I 
would have enough time to write reviews. 
Naaah! I'd rather play Psygnosis games. 

OH NO! MORE LEMMINGS 

Psygnosis 

29 Saint Mary's Court 

Brookline, MA 02146 

617-731-3553 

What I just said in the review of Leander 
about haling Psygnosis goes double for Oil 
No! More Lemmings. I've been saving 
these little dweebs for months now and 
they still haven't learned not to go jumping 
off cliffs. I suppose I'll just have to keep on 
saving them. Sigh. 

Oh No! is available in two versions, one 
a stand-alone and the other an add-on disk 
that requires the original Lemmings. There 
are 100 new screens to solve and they have 
the same range of difficulty as the originals. 
Overall, these new levels are even better 
than Ihe first set. I think that's probably 
because the designers have had more time 



.info MARCH 1992 29 




CYffPRWLAY 



Take a 

journey into 

heavy game 

addiction with 

TTR's 

Thromulus. 




to create them and have also had a year's 
worth of feedback from players. At any 
rate, if you're a Lemmings fan. Oh No! is 
an absolute requirement for your collection. 
Lemmings lias made Psygnosis the reign- 
ing superstar of the gaming firmament and 
they, in turn, are taking full advantage of it 
with all kinds of keen marketing toys. The 
.info offices are decked out in cutout stand- 
up lemming, I wear a Lemmings tee shirt 
most of the lime, and it won't be long 
before there are stuffed lemmings sitting all 
over the place. It couldn't happen to a nicer 
bunch of little green-haired critters. By the 
way, if you look around you may still be 
able to find the freely distributable Lem- 
mings Christmas Demo. The guys wear, of 
course, little Santa hats and there's a Christ- 
mas music soundtrack. Put it in with your 
Christmas decorations and pull it out next 
holiday season for some smiles. 

THROMULUS 

ikikikik 

TTR Development 

6701 Seybold Road 
Madison, Wl 53719 
608-277-8071 
At first. I thought Thromulus was just 
another derivative of Reversi or a quick 
Spot knockoff, but sometime around the 
fourth straight hour with it. I decided it was 
a pretty good game on its own. By the sev- 
enth hour, I was debating what to erase 
from my hard drive to make room for it and 
by the tenth, with my Saturday completely 
wasted. 1 finally summoned up my last liny 
shred of willpower and turned off the 
Obsess-O-Malic. Well. Okay, I did play 
another 10 one-last-games, but then I 
turned it right off. I can mm it off anytime 1 



want. 

On the surface. Thromulus is in the same 
family of games as Othello and Spot, but in 
some ways I like it much better. The rules 
are very simple: you place a playing piece 
on a grid and all the adjacent pieces, 
including the diagonals, become yours. It's 
a vicious game of strategy and there are 
enough variations and options to give it 
depth. Usually, I get bored with games like 
this fairly soon, but being able to play a 
nearly unlimited series of different boards 
and add several types of obstacles provide 
enough variety within the framework of the 
game to make il one to keep coming back 
for more sessions. Player conveniences 
haven't been overlooked, either. You can 
save a game in progress, save and load 
boards you're particularly fond of, and 
design your own layouts. The program will 
also generate random boards for you. 

There arc some things about Thromulus I 
don't like. I get tired of the same red and 
blue colors. There's a legitimate reason for 



it. having to do with the game being set 
within the metaphor of blood cells and 
viruses, but because the game is good 
enough without the setting. I'd like to be 
able to use different graphics. In flipping 
through screens, I ran across the graphics 
for the board and playing pieces laid out in 
what looked like a DPaint screen, so it 
would be a simple matter to let the player 
load in a substitute. (I tried loading the 
default into DPaint. but was told it was a 
mangled IFF.) I'd also rather not have to 
wail through the title screen after finishing 
a game - I'm obsessed with it and I want to 
play again right now. not in fifteen seconds. 

1 didn't expect to like Thromulus as 
much as I do. It's a game I'll keep on my 
hard drive permanently and I don't do that 
with many of them. I'd like to see TTR 
release additional boards or a version that 
will let you load boards and pieces of your 
own design. On second thought, I hope 
they don't. I'd never get anything else 
done. 

HOME ALONE 

Capstone/lntracorp 

14202 SW 136th Street 
Miami, FL33186 
305-252-9040 
While it's absolutely no fault of Cap- 
stone or this game. I'm starting to get really 
tired of Home Alone and Macaulay Culkin. 
Everywhere I look, there's his terminally 
cute little face and everywhere I shop, there 
are racks of Home Alone videotapes. Let's 
give it a rest for a while. Okay? 

As a computer game. Home Alone is a 
natural and this version lakes the correct, if 
obvious, approach. It's divided into two 




Digitized movie 

images 

combined wilh 

sharp artwork in 

Capstone's 

version of 

Home Alone. 



30 .info MARCH 1992 




CYffPRWLAY 



phases: first, you run around collecting 
objects and placing them as traps in various 
parts of the house; second, the burglars 
enter and you must avoid them while lead- 
ing them into the traps. The graphics are 
better than average, crisp and with enough 
detail to give the game atmosphere. There 
are also digitized images from the movie 
here and there. 

With the exception of some required 
keyboard work, the play is fairly easy, 
which makes the game ideal for kids and 
that's definitely the target audience for 
Home Alone. Control can he either all key- 
board or a combination of keyboard and 
joystick. I think it's a little too complicated 
for small children, though older kids won't 
have any problem. Like most games 
derived from movies. Home Atone doesn't 
have much depth and adults will probably 
tire of it quickly. Kids, on the other hand, 
will have a great lime with it. 

I want to give Capstone a little praise 
here. In the past, I've railed at them for 
their low production values and sometimes 
sloppy programming, but Home Alone is a 
major improvement in overall quality. I'm 
glad to see it and I think we can expect 
even better from them in the future. 

CHIP'S CHALLENGE 

~kik~fc 

Epyx 

PO Box 8020 
Redwood City, CA 94063 
415-468-3200 
Yes, you read the publisher's name right, 
it really is Epyx. This is the first Amiga title 
we've seen from the company since it col- 
lapsed a couple of years ago. Epyx has 
been slowlv making a comeback, starting 




out with a few cartridge games, a few IBM 
titles, and now one for Amiga. We're glad 
to welcome them back after so long an 
absence. 

The long hiatus shows in Chip'.': Chal- 
lenge. It's a reasonably good game, but it 
has the look of an older title. It's an arcade 
puz/.le game along the lines of Boutderdash 
and Britannica's superb Prospector in the 
Mazes oj'Kor. The object of the game is to 
make your way through a playfield cun- 
ningly filled with traps and impediments. 
Even though they're more than adequate, 
the graphics could have used considerably 
more polish and detail. There are 144 levels 
in all, though I've only gotten through the 
first ten or so. Figuring out how to get 
through a level is a matter of trial and error, 
and the game does give you a code word 
after every level so you don't have to start 
at the very' beginning each lime you play. 
However, I do think that some of the boards 
rely a little too much on unnecessary repeti- 
tive tasks to make them seem more difficult 



Knights 

of the Round 

Table take a trip 

to Spain in 

Virgin Games' 

Vengeance of 

Excalibur. 




Welcome 
back, Epyx! 
Their first 
Amiga release 
in a couple 
of years is 

Chip's 
Challenge. 



than they are. For example, on one screen 
you have to pick up four differently colored 
keys, but between each one you have to run 
over and throw a switch to gain access to 
the area where the key is. It gets a little 
tedious. 

While Chip's Challenge isn't one of the 
best of the year, it still has plenty of enter- 
tainment value, it's addictive enough that I 
found myself playing it quite a lot longer 
than I needed for this review. In fact. I 
believe I'll give it another go right now. 
Please don't disturb me for a couple of 
hours. Okay? 

VENGEANCE OF EXCALIBUR 

Virgin Games 

18061 Fitch Avenue 
Irvine, CA 92714 
714-833-8710 
Just when I thought I'd had to save 
Camelot for the last time, along comes 
Vengeance of Excalibur and I have to do it 
all over again. If you remember Virgin's 
Spirit of Excalibur, you'll remember its fine 
interface and lush graphics. This instalment 
is just as good as the original. It seems that 
after the death of Morgan le Fay. an even 
worse creature was unleashed and this 
Shadowmaster has kidnapped the court 
enchantress, the Grail, and Excalibur. Your 
quest to recover them takes you to Spain, 
where the game is set. Using a scrolling 
map with overlaid control icons, the play is 
reasonably fast and all action is accom- 
plished by poini-and-click operations. It's a 
good interface with a short learning curve. 
If anything, the graphics are even better 
than in the original. (I'd still like to see 
more frames in the animations, though.) 



.infO MARCH 1W2 31 




CYBWRPLAY 




Wandering 
around Hobbiton 

in Interplay's 

interpretation of 

Tolkien's classic 

Lord of the 

Rings. 



The sound and music arc the weakest part 
of the game, sounding flat and tinny. 
What I like most about Vengeance, 
besides the graphics, is the medieval Span- 
ish selling, where quarreling Christian 
kings are trying lo oust the ruling Moors. It 
adds an exotic element thai makes a 
refreshing difference from the standard 
Arthurian quest games. Vengeance of 
Excalibur is well worth adding lo your 
graphic adventure game shelf. 

LORD OF THE RINGS 
Unrated 

Interplay 

3710 S.Susan 

Santa Ana, CA 92704 

714-545-9001 

In all the years I've been reviewing 
games, this is ihe first time I've decided lo 
print a review without a rating. The plain 
fact is that the Lord of the Rings is a per- 
sonal, subjective thing. I've read the books 
in excess of thirty limes; for a couple of 
years, they're all I read. I taught myself to 
write elvish and learned the lore of Middle 
Earth. Because I knovv the story so well and 
because it's my all-lime favorite work of 
fiction, I can't come even close to being 
objective about the game. 

There have been several computer-game 
versions of the trilogy, for the most part 
poorly done, but this one from Interplay is 
the best yet It's an enormous game, taking 
the story as far as the Mines of Moria. Ii 
uses an overhead view, as originated in 
Faery Tate Adventure, and the graphics are 
quite well done. The introduction lo the 
game is one of the longest, as well as one 
of the besl, I've seen. The artwork is excep- 
tional. The play is handled as in a fantasy 



role-playing game, with exploration, 
encounters, and hit points. Thai's not the 
way I would like to have seen it done, but 
Interplay has done an admirable job in the 
execution. There are several levels of 
menus for managing inventories, talking lo 
other characters, and doing battle, all of 
which are slower to navigate than I would 
like. (For that mailer I think Ihe whole 
game should be speeded up.) My only seri- 
ous complaints are that combal should have 
been more automated and you're only 
allowed two saved game positions. Usually 
in FRPGs, there are far too many encoun- 
ters and far too much combal. but this game 
keeps it toned down to a more reasonable 
level. (I'd still like to see hil points out- 
lawed altogether.) 

If you're a Tolkien fan, you'll have to 
buy this game just to see how it's done. If 
you've never read Lord of the Rings, Inter- 
play's game will serve as an introduction, 
but I'd recommend reading the books, too. 
For me, I'd rather read ihe books and let 



Tolkien's words fill my head with images, 
but not everyone feels that way; just this 
once, I'm going to cop out and tell you lo 
judge for yourself. 

DARKMAN 

Ocean/EA 

1450 Fashion Island Blvd. 
San Mateo, CA 94404 
415-571-7171 
If it were up to me. I would change the 
title to Drekman. Basing a game on a hil 
movie is one thing, basing one on a Hop 
implies considerable lack of sense, I don't 
mind admitting I didn't sec the movie: the 
trailers and the reviews were enough to put 
me off it. The game probably follows the 
movie and there were references to charac- 
ters I knew nothing about, but it's a bad 
enough game thai I don't much care. I was 
immediately disgusted with it in the first 
section. You're supposed to take snapshots 
of Ihe villain as he races across a screenful 
of windows. The problem is thai the joy- 
stick response is too slow to give you even 
a faint hope of success. After that, you 
move into a standard sidescrolling slreet- 
scene where you have lo fight through end- 
less ailackers. I couldn't stand any more 
after thai. Change the name, slightly mod- 
ify the graphics, and you have Robocop 2 
or The Untouchables or Predator or any of 
a dozen other movie adaptations distin- 
guished only by their lack of originality and 
high body counts. Give Darkman the deep 
six. 




The graphics 
aren't bad, but 

Darkman 

isn't something 

I'd care fo play 

again. 



32 .infO MARCH 1992 




ORK 



Beamed down to the planet Ixion from the 
Legion Ship, Cissker, aspiringCaptain 
Ku-Kabu I has to face the dangersand tests 
specifically placed on thisplanetin orderto 
prove himself worthy of Leadership. Failing 
anyofthetests will end hiscareerasa 
Legion-Command Officer , . , permanently! 

Togivehirnafightingchance,Ku-Kabulis 
fitted with twin laser cannonsandrefuelable 
jet boosters. 

Usingbrainsand brawn he mustfind, collect 
and useobjectstosolvethemany perplexing 
puzzlesanddefeatthe hordes of mighty 
enemies that infestthisdeadlyarena. 

3-layerparallaxscrolling,arcade-speed 
actionand powerful FXcombinewith 
total-gamep lay addiction to bringyou the 
experience thatisOrk! 

AreyouOrkenough? 

Screen Shots from the Amiga version. 





AGONY 

Pit your magical powers against an equal but opposite mystical force. Use your 
sorcery and fighting skills to battle through six graphically - excellent levels, 
each infested with nordes of beautifully-animated conjured-up creatures. 
Pick up potions and spells to help your valiant struggle to find the secret of 
Cosmic Strength. 

Experience four layers of incredibly-smooth parallax scrolling, animated 
backdrops, a massive play area, hundreds of on-screen colours, unbelievable 
gameplay and an exorbitant sound track all expertly mixed together and 
skilfully cast to bring you a spellbinding brew of computer gaming action. 
Experience Agony with no pain! 

Screen Shots from the Amiga version. 




%mi 



■ r ,i i i : ! 1 1 



-■■.-'--,■,-.:■■:•--,-. :, 



« 



Circle #118 on Ihe Reader Service Card 



PSYGNOSIS 

29 Saint Mary's Court, 

Brookline, MA 02146 

Telephone: (617) 731-3553 

Fax:(617)731-8379 



^■*<E- -*v ■-* 




l'-". 1 ! 







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Art created with Seven Seas MathVision 



Serious Science Software 




by Mark R. Brown 

The Amiga is a marvelous machine. 
Everyone knows it's the best personal 
computer ever built for playing 
videogames. 
But the very capabilities that 
make it an unmatched game 
machine - impressive speed, brilliant 
color, and stereo sound - also make it a 
serious scientific workhorse. 



bi 



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34 .info MARCH 1992 



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Maple V's 2D screen with two plot windows. 



ItapleV Plot3 



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Perspective: 




A Map/e V3D plot screen with Intuition 2.04 gadgels. 




dentists do use Amigas: they're being used for 
serious scientific research at hundreds of 
private research labs, government agencies, 
and universities. True, scientists generally 
opl for the higher-end Amiga models, with 
multi-megabytes of RAM, lots of hard 
drive space, and (he fastest possible proces- 
sors and co-processors. They've even been 
known to hook their Amigas up to mainframe 
computers. But that is true of any computer plat- 
form a scientist chooses. Just as most people 
think you can never be too thin or too rich, scien- 
tists believe that you can never have loo much 
computing power. 

Science and math applications are notoriously 
cpu-intensive. Some scientific problems can only 
be run on supercooled Crays. Storm cloud simu- 
lation is a good example - there are just too 
many data points changing too rapidly to 
make this type of simulation a good can- 
didate for running on a personal com- 
puter. But the sad truth is that most scientists 
don'l have continual access to a Cray, or even 
an IBM mainframe. And even if they do. (he 
competition for runtime on such machines is 
fierce. Fortunately, there are still many problems 
that can best be handled by a PC. and the Amiga 
is as capable as any. On a price/performance 
basis, it's the best deal going. 

Of course, the limiting factor is software. 
Many scientific applications are so specialized 
thai the software must be written specifically for 
the problem. Access to a good FORTRAN or C 
compiler is then the major concern. Fortunately, 
the Amiga is well-equipped with a plethora of 
programming languages, both commercial and 
PD, and a great many support libraries are 
available to help handle the crunching and dis- 
play of data. Scientists who want to develop their 
own applications software do no! find themselves 
hampered in the Amiga environment. 

But for those who are seeking 'off the shelf' 
solutions, there are a few serious scientific and 



mathematical software packages available for the 
Amiga. Unfortunately, there are not as many as 
there are for PC clones or the Macintosh, but 
some very powerful programs are available for 
the Amiga platform. 

Maple V 

At the very top of the list of serious Amiga 
software is Maple V. This mathematics package is 
one of the most highly-rated math programs 
available for any computer. There are versions for 
Unix, XWindows, NeXT, Macintosh, IBM/PC, 
H-P, Sun, VAX. IBM mainframes, and even 
Cray! PC magazine reviews have called il supe- 
rior in many ways to Mathematica and Macsymo. 
And the latest incarnation, version five, is 
available on the Amiga. Best of all. the price of 
the Amiga version is the lowest of any Maple 
now available: S-t.W. 

Maple V is the first software package 
we've seen that abso- 
lutely requires AmigaDOS 
v2.04. In fact, it won't even 
run with some of the earlier 
release versions of 2.0 for the 
A3000. But installing 2.04 is a 
small price to pay for the 
power of this program. 
(Besides, you were just about 
to upgrade anyway, weren't 
you?) Il also requires a mini- 
mum of eight megs of hard 
drive space and two megs of 
RAM. though I'd recommend 
more. Some 3D plots I tried 
were too complex even for our 
five- megabyte A3000 test 
machine. Obviously, an '020 
or even '030 with a math 
coprocessor is also highly rec- 
ommended. 
Maple \ ' incorporates over 2000 (!) matbemati 



Maple V is the first 

software package 

we've seen that 

absolutely 

requires 

AmigaDOS v2.04. 

In fact, it won't 

even run with some 

of the earlier 

release versions of 

2.0fortheA3000. 



JnfO MARCH 1992 35 



Plotl l*i Oft tuition ft J 
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0\ Z Colai-lriff | 
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A Maple V Plot3D rendering of four similar functions. 



> diff(1/(x*2),x); 



> intt exp(-x*2)*ln(x), x ); 



cTTfTSSFDWoSuMy" 



Ml 



2 



(x t 2) 



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I expt- x ) Intx) dx 



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s;g 




The Maple Umain screen, with input and output windows. 




cat functions, with the ability to define even 
more. Its Pascal-like programming language lets 
you solve truly complex problems. (The package 
even includes a Maple language syntax checker 
called Mint.) For creating more complex and spe- 
cialized applications. Maple I' can even generate 
FORTRAN or C code. Just how powerful is 
Maple V? Let's just put it this way: If you can 
conceive of a mathematical problem, the odds are 
very, very good that Maple V can handle it. With 
over 2000 built-in functions, we can't possibly 
list them, but I've tried everything from '2+2' to 
calculus and couldn't make it choke. 

The program can send output to the text output 
screen, to a window on the 2D plot screen, or to a 
3D plot screen. The 2D screen creates a separate 
scalable window for each function or set of func- 
tions plotted. Each 3D screen plots just one 
function or set of functions at a time. The 3D 
screens have some excellent DOS 2.0 
gadgets for controlling various parame- 
ters, including viewing 
angle and perspective. I wish 
the rest of the program had a 
similar interface. Unfortu- 
nately, the default user inter- 
face for Maple V is little better 
than a standard CLI window. 
You type in commands 
line-by-line, with the ability to 
recall previous lines and edit 
mistakes. You can also cut and 
paste from the help or output 
windows, which is handy for 
entering examples. But this 
implementation of Maple V 
lacks the much more exciting 
wordprocessor-like editing 
window of the Mac version. 
The folks at Waterloo Maple 
Software tell us there's a lot of work in develop- 
ing such an interface, but they plan on porting it 
to the NeXT and Windows, If they get a good 



Maple V 

iklkikik* 

$450.00 
Waterloo Maple 

Software 

160 Columbia 

Street West 

Waterloo, ON 

Canada N2L 3L3 

519-747-2373 






response from people buying this version of 
Maple for the Amiga, they'll consider upgrading 
its user interface, too. 

Maple V can also be invoked in a manner that 
uses the CLI that calls it as the user interface. So 
you can run it from the AmigaDOS Shell and get 
Shell-like command editing. Or you can call it 
from ConMan or WShell or any other AmigaDOS 
CLI analogue and gel the editing functions of that 
environment. Maple V also has an ARexx inter- 
face, and you can launch the program as an 
ARexx-only application that sits in the back- 
ground watting for ARexx commands. This fea- 
ture screams out for someone to write an ARexx 
interface that makes the creation and editing of 
formulas and programs easy. A good ARexx- 
based control panel implemented in Hyperbook 
or CanDo, with hooks linking a good text editor 
to Maple V, would make this program acces- 
sible to the masses. 

Output can also be had in the form of 
IFF graphics, a text file, PostScript, and for- 
mats acceptable to a selection of graphics ter- 
minals. The most useful For serious work is 
LATeX formal, which is compatible with Radical 
Eye Software's implementation of the Tj£X type- 
setting language for the Amiga. This format lets 
serious users of Maple V produce typeset docu- 
ments with mathematical formulas and calcula- 
tions ready for publication. Maple V and Amiga- 
1'liX are without question the most valuable and 
essential combination of Amiga software a scien- 
tific professional could own. [AmigaT£X is 
available from Radical Eye Software, PO Box 
208 1 , Stanford CA 94309.] 

In short. Maple I 7 is a very import an I product 
for the Amiga, and a very capable tool for the sci- 
ence, math, or engineering professional. 

Colorful Visions 

There is other math software for the Amiga, of 
course. We've told you many times about 



36 JnfO MARCH 1992 




CRAPS: 50 RUNS 


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MathVision plots a 3D trig function. 



Encapsulated Postscript output from MultiPlot. 



MathVision (formerly Doug's Math Aquarium) 
from Seven Seas Software. This mathematical 
and graphical wonder is an exploratorium of 
wonderous mathematical curves and spaces. Its 
input screen allows you to create an almost 
unlimited array of mathematical formulas, which 
you can then plot in color in a multitude of ways. 
The results arc so wonderful that it's almost not 
like math at all. but like some weird, advanced, 
extraterrestrial form of string art. 

But MathVision is also a serious mathematical 
tool. It can be used to explore the Mandelbrot and 
Julia sets, fractals, chaos, and other topics on the 
culling edge of mathematical research, ll can also 
be used loplol useful scientific and engineering 
functions, deriving visual maps that make those 
functions more 'real.' The title graphic of this 
article was created using MathVision and 
sophisticated formulas for the generation of 
3D shaded Julia set images. The sample 
on this page shows a simpler but still 
impressive plot of three-dimensional 
trigonometric curves. Besides being a useful 
graphic tool and fun Amiga toy. MathVision is a 
must-have lor serious scientific and mathematical 
researchers. 

It's a Plot! 

One of the favorite pastimes of the scientist is 
generating and plotting data. The data generation 
we'll leave up to the experimenter: but the plot- 
ling we can hand over to MultiPlot. This Share- 
ware ($20) data plotting program is a very capa- 
ble research tool. Developed for use in the 
Immunology Laboratory at Massachusetts Gen- 
eral Hospital, MultiPlot can plot multiple sets of 
data in a variety of ways, producing IFF graphs 
on the Amiga screen, creating various CAD pro- 
gram formats, generating Postscript or FPS files, 
or milking HPGL plotter files. The program even 
comes with a PLT: device driver that turns a pref- 
erences printer into a respectable plotter. 



The latest version is MultiPlot XLNc. available 
on Fish #572. Any number of daia sets may be 
plotted on a common X-Y axis, though for 
monochrome output MultiPlot lias available only 
six different point and line representations. (For 
color use, each of these can be represented in one 
of several colors.) Two types of data smoothing 
and four kinds of curve fitting are supported, and 
there are a variety of WYSIWYG screen-editing 
functions as well. The plots are of professional 
quality, as the FPS example printed here should 
prove. (For the slory of this graph, and the data 
plotted on it. see this issue's .info technical sup- 
port section.) 

Input is via a simple columnar ASCII text file. 
Data is directed into the proper input positions 
via a configurable input filter. MultiPlot is capa- 
ble of handling X and Y data with high and low 
error values, but needs only a Y value to cre- 
ate a valid graph. Once a graph has been 
produced, it is possible to sort by X val- 
ues. Graphs can include 

error bars, and can be for- 
matted as scatter graphs, bar 
graphs, or line graphs, 

I've fully enjoyed using this 
program. It's intuitive, power- 
ful, and impressive. The 
Amiga needs more programs 
like MultiPlot. 



The Sky's the Limit 

Astronomy is the oldest of 
the sciences. As a hobby, more 
people are involved in astron- 
omy than in all the other sci- 
ences combined. Perhaps it's 
simply because the sky is 
always there overhead for all 
of us to sec. Maybe it's some- 
thing deeper. In any event, we are lucky enough 
to have two excellent commercial planetarium 



MathVision 

$197.00 

Seven Seas 

Software 

35 Cape George 

Wye, 

Port Townsend, WA 

98368 

206-385-1956 



JnfO MARCH 1992 37 






programs available for the 
Amiga. 

Distant Sims v4.0 was the 
first of these. [See review in .info 
'45. $99.95 from Virtual Reality Labo- 
'atories. 2341 Ganador Ct., San Luis 
Obispo CA93401, 805-545-8515.1 
This excellent program lets you view 
an image of the night sky from any spot on 
earth (or even from vantage points elsewhere 
n space) at jusl aboul any time in history. 
You can pick the magnitude of stars you 
want visible, add in nebulae and galaxies if ^nJ L«^^ 
you want, and even expand the view to include a 
huge catalog of stellar objects with optional data 
disks. Clicking on an object brings up a data 
window filled with information. Clicking another ^^ 
button can bring up a digitized IFF picture. ^yS 
One menu selection brings up ephemeris 
another tells you what's happening in the sky 
it now,' including the phase of the moon. You 
set the whole sky in motion at any speed, or 
lave it sit stock still while you examine stellar relation- 
ships in detail. 

The planets aren't forgotten, either. You can set them 
in motion, watching them move across the heavens. 
You can see where they were last week or where 
they'll be a hundred years from tonight. It's wonderful. 
Most of the same things are [rue of the newest 
astronomy program for the Amiga, Voyager. [See 
preview, .info #46. $124.95 from Carina Software, 
820 Williams St., San Leandro CA 94577, 5 10-352- 
7332.] As a port from the Mac, this program has a 
decidedly different 'look and feel' than Distant 
Suns, though it functions similarly. It does have 
some nice touches of its own. like the world 
globe used to input viewpoint latitude and longi- 
tude. 

Both programs have available a selection of 
additional data and graphics disks. Either makes 
the study of astronomy much more interesting and 
enjoyable. 

If you're operating with a limited budget, you 
might want to check out StarChari [Fish # 1 59], 
a PD planetarium program with a somewhat 
more limited view of the universe. Still, this program^^**^ 
will show you hundreds of stellar objects in the night 
sky for any time or location, and will bring up an 
information window for any object selected. 




Miscellaneous Software 



TheP uttic 



aS ironomY v 



There are dozens and dozens of interest- 
ing mathematical, scientific, and engineer- 
ing related Amiga PD and Shareware 
software titles. Though listing them all would 
take an inordinate amount of space, we've 
picked out a few to share with you. Most of the 
best can be found on the 580+ Fish Disks. 
Besides those listed here, you'll want to use the 
Aquarium Fish Disk database [Fish #559] to find 
more science and math applications. The 'Calculation' and 



& 



38 .infO MARCH 1992 



^t S^ Amiga Spectrogn 

^ ^v computes a fre. 

j sis of any IFF ! 

j^; i>^ : produces a col< 




TO 

\ /^ r^V^ tetrahedron, ai 
j^. dimensions. ' 

hie realitv-he 

^0*V^ sn 



Simulalion' index buttons will bring up quite a lew intei 
^ esting goodies, 

Amiga Spectrogram v63 [Fish #5431 

requcney spectrum analy 
K-bit audio sample, and 
produces a color display representing 
frequency versus time; when used on 
a sample of a human voice, this pro- 
duces a 'voiceprinl.'The picture shown 
here is an analysis of Madonna delivering 
an outrageous line on 'Saturday Nite Live 
If you've ever wondered what four- 
dimensional objects might look like to our 
pitiful three-dimensional eyes, check out 
Tcsseraci and 4D Navigator [ Fish #54 1 , not 
shown]. These programs allow you to rotate the 
4D analogues of a cube, an octahedron, a 
and a sphere in all four 
These programs are verita- 
ble reality-benders, but the scary thing is, after a 
^NJ few minutes of intense concentration you actu- 
ally start to get a 'feel' for the fourth diinen- 
ion! 
If you've delved very far into the field of computer 
I science, you've probably run into the concept of a 'Tur 
^j nig Machine." First proposed by computer pioneer 
^/^ Alan Turing, the Turing Machine is a simple hypothet- 
ical computer that runs a program composed of a long 
paper strip of O's and 1 's. The TM can read a single 
bit at a time, move forward or backward, write a or 

INw I to the strip, and change the state of its internal reg- 

^S> isters, Thai's it. But Turing assured that such a sim- 
ple machine could emulate any more complex 
computer - provided that time was not import an I 
This principle has since been extended to two 
dimensions, with four directions of move- 
ment and four pixel colors on the program 
field instead of just two binary 'bits.' As 
the two-dimensional Turing Machine tra- 
verses its colorful plane, it changes the 
colors of the bits it travels over, creating interesting 
patterns that range from wild, abstract Hows to rigid, 
ordered patterns. TurMite [Fish #249] is one of my 
favorite Amiga PD programs because it's so fast and col- 
orful and fun to watch. It will let you generate random 
2D Turing Machine programs, or you can write 
them yourself. It's much more fascinating to 
I watch in real-time than it is on the printed page 
^Sj Elements [Fish #384] is a marvelous inlerac- 
^S>vj! -^r^ live periodic table of the elements. Clicking on 
an element in the table brings up a window full of 
information about it; shift-clicking on two elements 
displays data on how they react together. 

We mentioned Chemesthetics [Fish #574| a few 

k. It creates illustrations of molecules 

on the Calotte model. As the docs for 

iy, 'even dangerous molecules like diox- 

ine look quite nice.' It can save its creations 




y-^^JI^S^ issues bac 
^C ^ri based oi 



as IFF tiles, and includes many sample data 



\|U^es 

Gravity-Well | Fish #250] simulates the motion of 




aes °n f/le 



Carb0 ^ya^ 



°orjo. 



infO MARCH 1992 39 



Pot Some 

in Your Animations 
With 



liys.i 



Outstanding 3D Object Sets, 



■ gWXufcufc -Clarity Casual 
Copper Paladium -Helsinki 

■■iPa-A^PLcx -Microbes 

Future Shock 



fivailable in Lightwave 3D 
and Imagine Formats. 
1 Coming soon for Caligari 2! 



iDesigned for Professionals 



• Full Upper/Lower case, Numbers and 16 
Punctuation Symbols ( 702 objects in all!) 

- All objects designed to properly support 
Phong Shading for best possible output. 

- Curved portions have plenty of points to 
remain smooth even at high resolutions. 

- All character objects are accurately 
aligned to a baseline to save you time. 

- Each version is optimized to best exploit 
the features of its associated program 
Complete Tutorial included! 



.^.-.■-.\^\y.y-^ ;.;.;;v.>:: ';-:■: 



What the Critics are Saying 



"...just the licktt for Toaster 2.0 users... I can attest to 
their craftsmanship and usability. - 

-Dr. Mortler, Avid 1/92 
",„thc fonts look great when rendered." 

- Mr. Dubrenun, Avid L/92 
These fonts are the best objects we have seen, honest. 

1/ you need this kind of product you need Broadest 
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1 Special .info Readers Offer: | 
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astronomical objects in three dimen- 
sions. The program comes with data 
for the solar system and the local 
group of stars, and you can easily cre- 
ate your own object data by typing in 
numbers in the data window, or by 
using the mouse. The multi-window 
interlace is really well done and 
is easy to use. My fascination . 
with this program arose from 
making subtle changes in the state 
of the solar . system and then watching 
the inner planets fly away like billiard 
balls. It's astounding to think that the 
universe is in such a delicate slate of 
equilibrium, 

Serious Work 

The Amiga is more than suitable for 
serious scientific work. Among those 
who know so are scientists and 
researchers at Lawrence Livennore 
Labs, the Stanford Linear Accelerator. 



Mercury flies 

from the solar 

system in a 

Gravity Well 

simulation. 



Chomesthetics 

draws a 

Triptycen 

molecule. 



Westinghouse Corporation. Sandia 
National Labs, the USGS volcano 
monitoring station at Hawaii National 
Volcano Park, Mount Palomar Obser- 
vatory, the UCLA Brain Research 
Institute, Deep Ocean Technologies, 
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, 
the University of North Dakota's 
Center for Aerospace Studies, 
the Cal State Mechanical Rngi- 
necring Department, MIT's Depart- 
ment of Materials Science, and the 
Math Department at the State Univer- 
sity of New York at Albany, among 
others. If you're using the Amiga for 
serious scientific research, you're in 
good company. 



Terminus 




Circle #133 on the 
Reader Service Card 



Fractal Pro 5.0 




by Tom Malcom 



FractalPro is about beauty. Without ques- 
tion, it produces some of the most breath- 
taking images ever seen on any computer 
screen. I'm a longtime fan of FractalPro; it 
is the first fractal explorer that let me step 
up from 32-color lo-res screens to 256- 
color HAM. Now FractalPro 5.0 goes even 
further, adding 24-bit support. You won't 
believe what your eyes are seeing! The 
graphics printed on this page are nothing 
compared to seeing them on-screen painted 
with light. 

FractalPro 5.0 improves considerably on 
previous versions, but the improvements 
come at a cost: it only works on an Amiga 
with either a math coprocessor or with a 
68040. The enormous number of calcula- 
tions required to generate even a lo-res 
screen make the process a very slow one. 
You'll also need a large hard drive if you 
plan to do any animations, which you cer- 
tainly will. FractalPro has built-in anima- 
tion support, controlled from a menu. Com- 
bined with the internal 24-bit graphics, you 
can make video fractal movies better than 
any you've seen before. There are menu 
options for panning and zooming, making 
motion control a simple matter. 

Old Flaws & New Stuff 

Unfortunately, 5.0*8 interface retains the 
clunkiness of the earlier versions. The two 
things I dislike most about it are zooming 
and the fact that it doesn't automatically 
jump from the control screen to the display 
screen. Zooming uses a standard Amiga 
window and is limited to IX, 2X, 4X, 8X, 
and 16X magnification. The width of the 




Wolf Mandelbrot, 

rendered 

at a count of 

2048. 



border on the zoom window makes it 
extremely difficult to position it accurately. 
I'm hereby pulling MegageM on notice that 
I want a draggable, scalable zoom box in 
the next version. 

There are a couple of new types of frac- 
tals in the 5.0 version, bringing the total to 
eight: there are the standard Mandelbrot 
and Julia sets, and then both Mandelbrot 
and companion Julia versions of Cube 
(Z A 3+Z & Z A 3+C), Sine (SinZ+Z & 
SinZ+C), and Wolf (WolfZ+Z & 
WolfZ+C), The Woif Mandelbrot is my 
new favorite and I'll be spending months 
rendering screens with it. 

VistaPro and ScapeMaker 

One of the things 1 like most about Frac- 
talPro is its increasing integration with 
another of my favorite Amiga titles, 
VistaPro. FractalPro 5.0 can automatically 



Sine Mandelbrot, 

based on the 

formula 

SinZ+2. 




save data in VistaPm format for later ren- 
dering into a landscape. MegageM also has 
a new version of ScapeMaker, numbered 
2.0. What ScapeMaker does is let you take 
virtually any IFF file and translate it into 
DEM data, with elevations based on the 
IFF's colors. The most interesting new fea- 
ture in ScapeMaker 2.0 is the ability to per- 
form a true double exposure, which allows 
you to load in two landscape files and add 
them together. Talk about some strange and 
wonderful possibilities! ARexx support has 
also been added and there's a convenient 
feature to measure the height of any given 
point in the image. 

MegageM 's fractal software has come a 
long way in the last couple of years. If 
you've exhausted all [he PD fractal explor- 
ers and are ready to move on to something 
better. FractalPro 5.0 and ScapeMaker 2.0 
are the ones to move to. You'll be seeing 
things even the wildest imagination could 
never dream of. 



FRACTALPRO 5.0 

$149.95 
+ 
SCAPEMAKER 2.0 

$39.95 

MegageM 
1 903 Adria 

Santa Maria, CA 93454 
805-349-1104 



.info MARCH 1 992 41 



rtoVisions 



Provisions Com 

Audio ...... 42 




Bob examines 2 expansion kits for B&P Pro. 


Video 


44 


OJ plugs in the Video Blender. 


Graphics . . 


. 46 


Brad works with Pixel 3D v2.0. 


MultiMedia 


.48 


Harv improvises music with CDTV. 






by Bob Lindstrom 



lllll*lllll 

The Creativity Kit 



$59.95 
The Pro Studio Kit 

ik-k-k-k 
$59.95 



Ck bsolete? Our product? Oh no, never! We've 
1 designed our product to grow with you, to 
f become more sophisticated as you become 
more sophisticated, to evolve with new power 
and new features as the hardware becomes more power- 
ful." 

Sine along, everybody: 

"Our product is truly an investment in the future." 
Right. 

If you've been using computers for the past 20 min- 
utes or more, you've probably heard 
dozens of variations on those themes. 
Trouble is, after all the promises have 
been sung, no one seems to remember 
the original tune at delivery time. Almost 
even' MIDI veteran's software (and 
hardware) collection has Version 1.0 of 
products that were going to be the great- 
est musical breakthrough of all time... as 
soon as Version 2.0 came out. 



Illlll«llll 



More Musical Plumbing 

Two outstanding exceptions to this 
aspect of life in the computing lane are 
Bars & Pipes and Bars & Pipes Profes- 
sional, both from Blue Ribbon Sound- 
works. These object-oriented MIDI 
sequencers have been highly touted for their ability to 
incorporate an unending series of new features as add-on 



tools. Fortunately for Amiga MIDI users. Blue Ribbon 
has backed up its promises by releasing no less than four 
full floppy disks of add-on tools and accessories for B&P 
(not to mention the extra sound sample and MIDI music 
file disks also sold by the company). 

The two latest add-on disks for B&P are The Creativ- 
ity Kit, an ingenious collection of algorithmic editors and 
other compositional aids, and The Pro Studio Kit, a more 
utilitarian selection of tools for fixing and fine-tuning 
MIDI data. 

Creativity Kit 

Of the two disks, The Creativity Kit is the more fun, 
including several "Gee, I should have thought of that" 
gadgets to make composing a more entertaining and 
interactive experience. 

For example: crank out an eight- or sixteen-bar rhythm 
track. It may be way cool on its own, but by the time 
you've looped it a few hundred times you're ready for a 
Rhythm Ace scholarship with the local Elks Club band. 

Before you have to start wearing matching white belts 
and shoes every Friday night, drop the Random Notes 
tool into your B&P Pro pipeline. (This tool, like several 
others on the disk, requires the Pro version of B&P to 
operate.) On-screen sliders allow you to set density, rate, 
note selection, feel, and several other parameters that 
control the random addition of notes to your track. With 
some deft tweaking, you'll have Random Notes dropping 
nifty little off-beat accents and unexpected variety into 



42 .infO MARCH 1992 



your repeating rhythms. Some will be hot, some will be 
the heaves. But you can edit out the stinkers later. In the 
meantime, you've created a non-repeating rhythm pattern 
with a minimum of sweat. 

The Creativity Kit includes nearly twenty add-on tools. 
All of these goodies are useful, but my favorites are: 

Arpeggiator: Arpeggio generators that create one-, 
two-, or three-octave arpeggios based on keyboard-held 
notes. The patterns can be adjusted to go up, down, ran- 
domly, or back and forth across the pitches. This is a neat 
way to automatically beef up your textures or to churn 
out New Age gibberish ad nauseum. 

Auto Transpose: Allows notes played on one track to 
influence the pitches in another track. Permits you to 
transpose existing sequences in real time by just hitting a 
note on the keyboard. A great aid when trying to find the 
right key for tone deaf Madonna wanna-bees. 

Riff-Chord: Here's the 'weird but cool' award-winner. 
This tool splits the keyboard. It silently generates chords 
based on the note you press on the left side, then audibly 
patches those harmonies into the single pitches you play 
on the right, A wonderful way to simulate more (and 
faster) fingers than God gave you. 

Step'n Out: An intelligent step editor. Play the 
pitches/chords you want to hear in any rhythm. Then go 
back and hit a single key to dictate the final rhythm of 
the passage. Step'n Out pastes the two entries together 
into a single pitch- and rhythm-perfect passage. If you 
hate the tedium of step editors but envy their effective- 
ness, Step'n Out is the answer. 

Also in The Creativity Kit are an Articulation Random- 
izer, a Triad Arpeggiator, a Glissando Generator, and 
more. 

Pro Studio Kit 

The 15 tools in The Pro Studio Kit aren't as clever as 
the tools in The Creativity Kit, and they all require 
Bars&Pipes Professional. Though not as glamorous, 
these tools are life-savers for MIDI manipulation. 

On the editing side, you have an Articulation Modifier 
that lengthens or shortens note duration; DeFlam and 
DeGlitch tools remove closely adjacent notes and notes 
of very short duration to perform 'clinker' surgery; an 
Event Smoother evens out the response curve on pitch 
bend and aftertouch data; a Note Convenor changes a 
single note into another throughout a complete track; a 
Note Filter redirects notes within a range to another 



Blue Ribbon SoundWorks 

1293 Briardale Lane NE 

Atlanta, GA 30306 

404-377-1514 



t'SftPip&s frntgssional 1 . Be m 1991 The Dlu» RTbb'i.n SpumlHoi'hs . Ltd.. 




:i ... i>iqui t~rm 



New B&P add-on tools add features and editing 
capabilities to B&P and B&P Pro. 



track; and a Velocity Controller converts control change 
events into note velocity, which is excellent for shaping 
phrases in real time. 

Other tools for polishing scores include Feels Good, a 
data shifter and randomizer that alters the 'feel' of per- 
cussion tracks by changing time and velocity values. 
With a basic setup based on the MT- 
32 percussion keyboard layout. Feels 
Good will immediately go to work for 
many Roland users and can be cus- 
tomized for other synths. 

Remote Patch identifies parts of the 
keyboard as program change buttons 
for on-the-fly patch changes. A related 
tool. Super Setup, defines an initial 
setup for a track including patch, vol- 
ume, pan position, and controller defi- 
nitions. 



nun nun 

It's nice to see a 

company 

standing behind 

their product 

by keeping 

promises. 



Good Tools 

The tools on both these disks fea- 
ture the button/slider design that makes all B&P tools 
easy to use. If you've struggled with the quantizing and 
algorithmic editing in some other sequencers, you'll be 
ecstatic over the real-time interactivity of these B&P 
tools. 

This is great stuff. The tools available only for use 
with Bars & Pipes Professional stand as a strong argu- 
ment for purchasing that version instead of the less 
expensive and less powerful Bars & Pipes "classic' It's 
nice to see a company standing behind their product by 
keeping promises and adding impressive functionality. 



Illl llll 



.into MARCH 1992 43 




by Oran J. Sands, 



Event Keys 



Session Can trot 

UBPanel .ses 



Key Mode 

Bckgnd 



Luna 
Notch Filter 
Mix Luna Local Color fludia Level 






■ 




B.BB.B 58, %,%. %. fl.B 53.94, 9,4. 
B2 D L R G B D fl B D 



The Video Blender's VBPanel master control panel module. 

lose on the heels of NewTek's Video Toaster 
comes another video peripheral with the 
name of a home appliance: the Video 
Blender from Progressive Peripherals and 
Software. It's not titled in such a manner simply to ride 
the Toaster bandwagon, however. It was named over 
three years ago when work began on the device, which is 
designed to 'blend' video much as a standard special 
effects generator does in the typical studio. 

More Than a Genlock 

Basically, the Video Blender fits into the genlock fam- 
ily of Amiga video devices. The 
Blender offers the usual standard 
Amiga genlock functions with fading 
between external video and Amiga 
imagery, synchronization of the 
Amiga to external video, and overlay 
of Amiga signal atop that video. But it 
has several features that set it apart 
from most genlocks. Check out this 
list of capabilities: 



illinium 



The Video Blender 

fits into the 

genlock family 

of Amiga video 

devices. 



IIIIHIIIIII 



B Remote control of all functions via 
connection to the Amiga's serial port. 

■ Built-in notch filter. 

■ Audio mixing of up to four sources. 
Luminance and external keying, which may all be 
used in combination with the standard 'color zero' 
keying. 

Mixing of more than one source of video. 
Processing amplifier controls to adjust saturation, 
brightness, and hue of external video signals. 



■ A built-in color background generator with software 
control of hue, luminance, and saturation, capable of 
producing any color from a palette of 16.7 million. 

■ Six software programs for controlling the Blender and 
producing wipe transitions between selected video 
sources. 

The Video Blender connects to any Amiga's RGB port 
with a 23-pin cable. Since the Blender is a actually a 
genlock, il cannot operate with a another genlock or 
Toaster installed {except as outlined in last month's 
Video column). It is an unassuming beige box (oh, how I 
wish someone would outlaw beige paint!) that sits 
between your monitor and computer. The connections 
are on the rear of the box, except for the four audio 
inputs. These are on the front panel, along with the proc 
amp controls and the audio level knobs. As for the opera- 
tional controls, well, there aren't any! The Blender is 
exclusively software controlled! If you're used to tweak- 
ing and twisting, then go somewhere else. The Blender's 
commands are sent via the serial port. If you want to 
control another device serially, you'll need a multi-serial- 
port card. Fortunately, the Blender's software multitasks 
nicely, and is capable of running in the background. 
There are six programs supplied with the Video Blender 
and you'll need at least four of them. 

The Software 

The Blender's software works well and in some cases 
is superb. Unfortunately, the programs interrelate in a 
manner that is somewhat confusing at times. Let's start 
with VBPanel. the program that allows you to set the 
controls of the Blender. Although the interface has slid- 
ers and buttons, you wouldn't use it to perform live 
effects and switching. You use the interface to set up a 
key, fade, or mix and then assign it to a function key. 
Then you can tell the interface to disappear and you can 
run any other Amiga program to display your images or 
animations. Pressing the function key will still command 
the Blender to perform the pre-designed effect. 

Should you have a sequence or series of events you'd 
like to line up and execute automatically, then you would 
use VBPanel to define and assign each event. Several 
events can be saved together as a session. At this point 
you move onto the next piece of software, VBPerform. 
This program is basically VBpanel with no panel. It lis- 
tens to a script file and performs the commands as told 
to. This script file comes from yet another piece of soft- 
ware called VideoScriptor. VideoScriptor allows you lo 
create and edit a series of images, animations, commands 
for Blender events or full sessions, as well as handling 
commands for other programs. It also allows the user to 
set up special effect wipe transitions between sources. 
These wipes may be created with yet another program... 



44 .info MARCH 1992 



but we're getting ahead of ourselves. Scripts written with 
VideoScriptor are used by another program called Slides 
(which is also used when previewing scripts while using 
VideoScriptor). Starting up the Slides program causes the 
script file to be read and executed. Slides will load and 
display the Amiga images and animations as required, 
for the specified time length or until a specified 'cue,' 
and will also activate das Blender by passing Blender 
commands to the VBPerform program, which needs to 
be running as well (it can be started by the Slides pro- 
gram, if need be). If all of this sounds a lot of work to 
basically do the same thing as ShowMnker. I'd have to 
agree. In fact, since ShowMaker can command serial 
port-controlled devices there's no reason why you 
couldn't do just that. The serial port command protocol 
for the Blender is included in the manual. 

The last two pieces of software that arc included with 
the Blender are used to create wipes. If you are using two 
non-Amiga sources of video, then the Amiga can be used 
to determine which of the two signals should be viewed. 
The manner in which this is done is by using a black and 
while pattern. Where the pattern is white, source A is 
seen, and the black portions become video source B. This 
is exactly the same approach as many add-on special 
effect units that you can buy for existing SEGs. If the 
pattern is changing, then the wipe changes as well. Given 
the Amiga's ability to make real-time ANIMs, you could 
produce almost any type of wipe you can imagine. To 
help you do this, PP&S has given you a program called 
MixMaster. MixMaster produces custom wipes by ani- 
mating brushes of your own design, or by using the 
'algo-brushes' included with the program. Algo-brushes 
arc defined polygon shapes that can grow or shrink in 
size without looking increasingly stair-stepped as normal 
brushes would when magnified. Stars, squares, triangles, 
and circles are just a few of the ten algo-brushes sup- 
plied, and you can design your own too! MixMaster can 
produce thousands of different wipe patterns. (You can 
even design a 'falling sheep' wipe! ) Should you not want 
to design a wipe from scratch, you can use the Wiper 
program, which has numerous pre-programmed wipe 
patterns. There are 16 different motions that can be 
reflected on both the Y and X axis, as desired. You can 
also separate the screen into multiple rows and columns 
of miniature wipes. The timing is adjustable and the 
wipes may be saved or played from within the program. 
It's so intuitive and simple you'll probably never read the 
instructions on how to use it, 

A Few Flaws 

Which brings us to the unsavory part. The manual, its 
tutorials, and instructions are flawed, and will give you a 
headache until you discover that the manual was written 
referring to a single program/data disk that ships with the 
Blender. Unfortunately the Blender actually ships with 



/A****** 



A star wipe in the Video Blender's MixMaster module. 



two disks! The install program on the first disk will not 
install the data on the second disk llherc is a data.install 
program on the second disk, but it isn't mentioned any- 
where). There is a 'read. me' file that mentions the second 
disk, but says nothing about what to do with it. All the 
tutorials mention the first disk (but never the second), 
and the second disk is where you'll find the data needed 
for the tutorials. And some of that data 
didn't make it to the second disk, so 
you'll can't finish some tutorials. 
None of this is damning, but it makes 
it difficult for the novice user. The 
VBPanel software looks to the floppy 
drives for its default files, which is a 
nuisance if you installed everything 
on your hard drive. 

I haven't mentioned actually mix- 
ing video from two external sources. 
The reason is that few of you will ever 
use the Blender for blending, because 
the second video source must not only 
be synchronous (or genlocked) with 
the first, but must also be an RGB 
video signal, not composite video! 
High -end cameras have this capabil- 
ity, but you won't find it on inexpen- 
sive or intermediate units. You could 
take PP&S's suggestion and buy a TBC that has RGB 
outputs, but these aren't exactly cheap either. Mixing 
external video sources may not be the foremost use of 
the Blender, but it still boasts its other features. If you 
can conquer the software and the manual, you'll have 
some unique functions available to you. 



Mil Hill 

Video Blender 

$1495.00 

&"&-&■ 

Progressive 

Peripherals and 

Software 

464 Kalamath St. 

Denver, CO 80204 

303-825-4144 

iiiiii him 



.info MARCH 1992 45 




GRA PHIC, 



by Brad Schenck 




Several objects created with Pixel 3D. including extruded and 
beveled text, spinning, and 'topographic' effects. 

have noticed something inleresting aboul 
artists who work with 3D modelling and ren- 
i tiering software: we hate object modelers. 
si» We may hate the one we work with most, or 
we may not. but we almost always hate everything else. 

The way 1 see it, even good, well-documented soft- 
ware can't make the process of learning to design three 
dimensional objects easy. For that reason I think we tend 
to want every tool we use to act like the first set of tools 
we really got the hang of. because get- 
ting the hang of them was a struggle. 

If we can lay our hands on good 
object conversion software so that we 
can use the modeler of our choice 
with the Tenderer we prefer, it can ease 
that struggle considerably, when also 
given specialized 3D modelling tools, 
we can have features that aren't pre- 
sent in whatever modelling environ- 
ment we use. 

Pixel 3D 2.0 tries to give us those 
options, and does a good job of it, 
overall . The program wears at least a 
couple of hats, and I've enjoyed trying 
them on, Lets's have a look under the 
brim. 



IIIIIIAIIIIII 

Even good, 
well-documented 

software can't 
make the process 
of learning to 
design three 
dimensional 
objects easy. 

IIIIIIAIIIIII 



2D to 3D 

In many cases it's easier to use paint software to draw 
a shape than to create the same shape in a 3D modeler. 
Logos and titles are an example. Outlines for spun or 
extruded objects are another. The original release of 



Pixel 3D did just that (and only that) in a simple, 
adjustable way. With Version 2.0, those features are 
retained but many more are added, making the program a 
versatile addition to anyone's 3D toolbox. 

Starting with bitmap conversions. Pixel 3D now not 
only converts 2D shapes to flat 3D shapes with 
adjustable extrusion, but also can automatically bevel the 
edges of the shapes, spin them in place or in extrusion, 
and interpret their color information in several ways. 

A converted bitmap may remain flat, with its colors 
recreated on the flat surfaces. Alternately, different colors 
in the image can be extruded to different depths; one 
option allows the colors in an image to be interpreted 
like a topographical map, with their edges smoothly 
modelled like the landscape such a map represents (take 
a look at the simple ground in the illustration). This last 
is one of the most promising features in the program's 
bitmap conversions. Using it creatively may make not 
only relief designs possible, but subtler objects like faces 
with various expressions. 

During a bitmap conversion, several line smoothing 
strategies can try to remove the typical jagged edges 
from 2D images, A little trial and error seems involved 
here, each image being a uniuue problem. For best 
results, one should use 2D images in as high a resolution 
as possible. 

Pixel 3D can extrude, bevel edges, and spin the 2D 
images it imports. The illustration shows a spun object, 
text with beveled edges, and a text object that was spun 
and extruded at the same time, all floating above a 'topo- 
graphical' ground that was generated from a simple 
image of grey rectangles (when rendered, an image map 
was applied to this object). Each of these operations is 
performed when an image is loaded, and if the results 
aren't satisfactory it's necessary to alter the settings 
(shown) and reload the image. Fortunately Pixel 3D 
works quite rapidly so this isn't too slow a process. 

The Program Display 

The created object is shown on Pixel 3D's screen in 
rendering modes that range from Wireframe to Filled 
Wireframe to Solid Color. The user can rotate the view 
around the object using arrow buttons or freehand with 
the mouse; a bounding box represents the object until the 
'Draw' button is selected. The program can draw the 
object using the same polygon ordering that Videoscape. 
ligktWave, and 3D Professional use, which can help the 
user to locate polygons that need to be flipped or doubled 
for those programs. 

That flipping and doubling can be performed with 
Pixel JDs's Data Manipulation controls, along with Point 
Reduction and 'Face Reduction*, which are useful when 
converting objects. Using these controls will change the 
object, so it's wise to save to disk before experimenting. 



46 .info MARCH 1992 



All the main controls are well organized and easy to 
use; the Bitmap Configuration and Data Manipulation 
panels are a bit more dense, but easy enough after a 
while. 

An ARexx port makes it possible for an external pro- 
gram to lake control of Pixel 3D, though macros can't be 
started from within the program itself. It's necessary to 
do so from the Workbench screen, or for another pro- 
gram to start the ARexx communication. As always, it 
would be possible to create ARexx macro control screens 
using CanDo, AmigaVision, or Hyperbook. 

Converting Objects 

Pixel 3D loads and saves 3D objects in a variety of 
formats: LightWave, Imagine, Videoscape, Sculpt. Turbo 
Silver, and 3D Professional are all supported, as are 
saves to AutoCAD's DXF format. 

Pair this with Pixel 3Ds*s Data Manipulation functions 
and the program becomes a valuable tool (remember 
what I said about everyone's favorite 3D modelers?). 
Polygons may be doubled for use in LightWave, 3D Pro, 
or Videoscape. When converting to those formats, which 
use many-sided polygons rather than triangles as raylrac- 
ers commonly do, triangles can be combined into single 
faces to reduce their number and memory requirements. 
When going the other way, many-sided polygons are 
converted to triangles. In most things concerned with the 
geometry (or shape) of an object, Pixel 3D does an excel- 
lent job of making the most efficient version of an object 
for use in the destination program. Not all these features 
are automatic, though: you'll need to learn the functions 
of the Data Manipulation panel to gel their full benefit. 

Whsre object converters usually fall short is in surface 
information, and here Pixel 3D, unfortunately, is like the 
rest. The program docs translate an object's color, but 
fails to translate other surface information like reflectiv- 
ity, transparency, and other attributes. 

In addition Pixel 3D doesn't deal with 'Grouped' 
objects. If one loads a group, all that comes through is 
the group's parent object. 

These aren't crippling problems. It is important, though, 
to keep them in mind for several reasons. Programs like 
LightWave, which stores surface information separately 
from object geometry, adapt well: one can edit the surfaces 
within LightWave to restore their lost qualities. In Imag- 
ined case, though, trying to edit the surface information 
for selected polygons can be tricky. Normally one just 
groups several independent objects together to avoid this 
but, as I mentioned, Pixel 3D doesn't deal with Grouped 
objects. For that reason, when going to Imagined object 
format it's best to convert complex objects as separate 
pieces, grouping them together later. 

I had one other problem with Pixel 3D's Imagine con- 
versions: the axis of the converted object would have a 



- is A: ■- 1 't'.' i " 

Bittvap Irtport Conf ifftu'atgon 






Ctnim-t^ign HoAv 


COLOR [ 


Spin 

JUS til i n.Tt inn 
Rot At ion Axis 
B c.-;-<f '.*<->■ Value 1 
Ttv8&&e Value 2 
SI ice Count 
ftatlius Offset 
Li (11* Siiuutlu ii. r 
Smoothing Value 


ON | 


Exli'Uston Set H 


r— _u 
r~~_u 


TOP | 


Extrusion Value 1 


S-FOHD I 


EKti'Lisirjri Value 2 
IntL'nsi ty R.artffe 
Gt-i.l Unit Size 
Beui»l ina 


ES3_f_| 

n~_u 
f~r i i 

OFF 


■■_!_( 

ihi_j_i 

BHJJ 

ALO 1 j 


Bevel iib Iu-.v t 


mm. i i 


Beu«-linEr Depth 


EH J J 


Load Settings) Clear* l.ivi- S 


ttin;(:i 1 










Continue 









■*1-Pf M4I 


■ JITTT-"'H 


L o,i it 


TrVOPt 

Canjffs 


Sagp 






A view of Pixel 3D 's multi-talented Bitmap Configuration 

controls; here's where we choose what to do to an image on its 

way to three dimensions. 



size of zero in all dimensions. This made it impossible to 
change the object's size in the Stage Editor. To fix this, I 
loaded the object into the Detail Editor, resized itsaxis 
only to a positive value, and saved it out again. This isn't 
a fatal problem, but it is one that I'd 
like to see fixed. 

In some cases. Pixel 3D seemed to 
create too many edges in Imagine 
objects, which prevented Phong Shad- 
ing from working. It's possible that 
more Data Manipulation would have 
prevented this: as it was, I Merged the 
offending objects within Imagiiie's 
Deiail Editor. 

Conversions to LightWave format 
seemed less troublesome. Apart from 
lost surface information, everything 
worked just fine. 



Conclusions 

Pixel JOs's unique features for 
importing bitmaps and finagling with 
the resulting 3D objects are excellent. 
The variety of formats it can save makes it a worthwhile 
program for 3D artists working with almost any other set 
of tools. 

Its abilities in object conversion are not as well imple- 
mented, but despite the relatively minor problems I've 
mentioned, it's better than anything else that's available 
for the job. 



IIIIIIAIIIIII 

Pixel 3D v2.0 
Si 29.95 

Axiom Software 
1221 East Center 

St.SE 
Rochester, MN 

55904 
507-289-8677 



IIIIIIAIIIIII 



.info MARCH 1992 47 




a 



MUL TIMED I 



by Harv Laser 




mil mil 

This time Harv 

looks at two CDTV 

titles which give 

you power over 

CD audio discs. 

IIIIII4IIIIII 



CD ReMix from Microdeal. 



^^^ his fascinating title furnishes vivid proof of 
■ ^k CDTV's superiority over regular hi-end pro- 
^^^^^grammablc CD players. CD ReMix goes 

m miles beyond the primitive form of program- 
ming found in mainstream decks. It is, in fact, an icon- 
driven CD programming and sequencing 'language." Put 
another way. it's an alternate music CD player interface 
to the one that conies built into 
CDTV's ROM chips, but with fat- 
more options and power. CD ReMix 
proves there's just no comparison 
between a programmable CD deck 
and a real computer with a CD player 
built in. 

The beauty of having a CDTV to 
create programmed music is that you 
can do it from across the room on 
your television screen, instead of hav- 
ing to deal with the banks of tiny, sim- 
ilar-looking buttons that the typical 
CD player has on its faceplate and 
remote. 

CD ReMix not only lets you sequence CD music in a 
zillion different ways, but it's also a mini effects and 
editing studio: you can add some outrageous spoken 
voice samples, Amiga speech, wacky sound effects, .sam- 
pled instrument sounds, sampled drums, and fades lo 
music from your own CD collection. Connect the inputs 
from your tape deck to CDTV's audio outputs and you 
can use CD ReMix to make some wild programs thai you 
can give to friends or play at parties or in your car. This 
thing literally is a 'D.J. in a (jewel) box.' 

CD ReMix has an attractive and relatively easy-to-use 



CD ReMix 

_V -_l_- -_!■„- _.!„- 

$49.95 w/o caddy 

Microdeal U.K. 

P.O Box 68 

St. Austell, Cornwall PI25 4YB 

England 

(0726)-68020 



interface made up of large, clearly labelled "marble' but- 
tons. The software reacts very quickly to your input (my 
guess is lhat it's written in assembly language). For most 
actions, you just use your controller's directional pad and 
A/B buttons. When text entry is desired or required, such 
as if you want to add an Amiga narrator-spoken phrase, 
CD ReMix offers a carousel-style alphabet selection, like 
the high score screens on which you enter your name in 
many computer games. So a 'real' keyboard is not 
required, but text entry is rather tedious. 

Once you've created a sequence and want to try il out, 
CD ReMix prompts you to pop otit its disc and insert 
your music CD. Doing Ibis does not cause CDTV to 
reboot. The CD ReMix software, your programmed 
sequence, and any selected sound samples slay in 
CDTV's RAM and arc then layered on top of or between 
sections (as short as a fraction of a second), loops (for 
that M-M-M-Max Headroom effect), and tracks on your 
music disc, using left, right, or both channels, and at vol- 
ume levels of your choice. 

CD ReMix is crammed with clever sounds to intermix 
with your music CDs. Choose from a myriad of DJ-stylc 
samples, mechanical and natural sounds, animal sounds, 
voices lhat shout different phrases, party noises, and 
more. You can create your own sound samples using an 
Amiga audio digitizer (no! included) and CD ReMix will 
read them in from floppy disks. The dozens of drum 
samples here are slick, and they run the gamut of just 
about everything the complete percussionist would want. 

The CD holds many pre-built sequences to give you a 
taste of every sample, effect, and drum on the CD ReMix 
disc. There are even a few (not nearly enough) sequences 
made to be used with two specific CDs: Madonna's 'Im- 
maculate Collection' and The Hurythmics' 'Greatest 
Hits' CDs. As a programmed sequence plays, different 
prompts and effects will appear on screen depending on 
what you've told CD ReMix to do. Drums invoke 'power 
meters.' Amiga speech talks with a little robotic face. 
Music segments display a timer. The authors should have 
included a lot more pre-programmed sequences for popu- 
lar music discs. Those lhat are here are really jus! a teaser. 



48 .info MARCH 1W2 



As a sound/sample/drum/music sequencer, CD ReMix 
is great fun. It's almost the perfect party toy once you 
and your guests figure out its interface and programming 
nuances. Although lite program can be made lo lock up 
by inserting the wrong CD at the wrong time, rebooting 
CDTV will bring up the CD ReMix interface in under 15 
seconds. After you slave over a sequence for a while, you 
should save it off to floppy disk, and one disk will hold 
hundreds of sequences. 

This software is definitely geared towards the MTV 
generation. Aging hippies will like it too. If" you've ever 
wanted to mess around with a DJ's mixing console, this 
program is for you. 

Music Maker 

Music Maker takes a very different approach lo mix- 
ing interaction between CD music discs and your input. 
Where CD ReMix relies totally on its paper manual to 
guide you through its features and functions, Music 
Maker has no manual at all. Rather, an enthusiastic- 
sounding male narrator leads you through the program's 
areas and features, and will demo the software while you 
watch and listen. Everything on this disc is easy to leam 
and use. 

Music Maker is divided into four main areas. Juke Box 
offers seventeen 'popular' full lengih CD-quality tunes, 
accompanied by individual thematic low-res graphical 
slideshows (to set a mood, I suppose) that run die gamut 
of the Easy Listening charts of the past few years, includ- 
ing Lionel Ritchie, Madonna. Sting, The Beailcs, Elton 
John, and Dire Straights, among others. Bui ihese selec- 
tions are not performed by the original artists who made 
them famous. Because securing the righis to ihc original 
recordings would have been cost-prohibitive, we are 
instead treated to Muzak-quality instrumental interpreta- 
tions of 'Yesterday,' into the Groove.' 'Lei il Be.' 'Geor- 
gia On My Mind,' 'Every Breath You Take" and a dozen 
other tunes. 

Play Along mode provides a selection of sampled 
instruments (synths, pianos, horns, elc.) which with to 
play the same 17 music tracks' melodies atop Ihe CD 
music in various ways. Either hunt and peck ihe noses on 
your controller's keys, guided by a screen metronome 



Music Maker 

$49.95 w/o caddy 

CDTV Publishing 

1200 Wilson Dr. 

Westchester, PA 19380 

215-431-9100 




Music Maker's 'Drum Along' screen. 



and colored prompts, or use a safer one-key approach 
that won't make your efforts sound completely lame. As 
you play along, you can turn on Music Maker's record 
feature to keep track of your key presses, should you 
want to replay them and embarrass yourself in front of 
friends later. This is party -fodder, if you haven't figured 
thai out yet. At-home entertainment for Karaoke jukebox 
sing-along fans. 

Moving on. Drum Along presents 
four different sampled drumkits. 
Choose one and you can bash away at 
them on top of your own favorite 
music CD's tracks as the number keys 
on your controller each invoke a dif- 
ferent part of Ihc kit. Drum Along is 
the easiest part of Music Maker to use, 
and, for my money, the best fun on the 
disc. If you're often tempted to play 
'air drums" while listening lo music, 
you'll enjoy this. 

Lastly, there's ihe Qui/, Time music 
game. Designed for two to four play- 
ers only, (apparently Music Maker's 
developers didn't think anyone lives 
alone) it's pretty standard-fare Trivial Pursuit"' type gam- 
ing. 

Music Maker is inoffensive and docile family-oriented 
musical entertainment, 'suitable for all ages' as the cliche 
goes. It's like going to a chaperoned party. Though CD 
ReMix is more challenging to use and master, it's also 
much more contemporary, cutting-edge, and geared 
towards those of you who yearn to apply some inventive 
creativity into programming your music. 



iiiiii huh 

Music Maker is 

family-oriented 
entertainment. CD 

ReMix is more 
challenging, 

contemporary 
and cutting-edge. 

IIIIII IIIIII 



JnfO MARCH 1992 49 




fw J AMIGA ^UDMli 

r v P 



#10 INFO May/June 1986 
Monitor Roundup! CW wordprocessors, Multi- 
plan for C64/C 1 28, Amiga BASIC. Tips & hints, 

#11 INFO Aug/Sept 1986 

Product Roundup issue: over 1500 hardware and 
software listings for Cu4. C12X and Amiga. 

#12 INFO Nov/Dec 1986 
Graphics report: Cf>4/l2K and Amiga painting. 
CAD. drafting, video animation, tools and utili- 
ties. Idea-processors. S bit business software. 

#13 INFO Jan/Feb 1987 
Games issue: C64/CI2K and Amiga games. X-Bil 
business and application software (part I), 
Telecommunication networking, Amiga Music. 

#14 INFO Spring/Summer 1987 
Product Roundup issue: over 2000 hardware and 
software listings forC64. C128 and Amiga. First 
look at the A500 & A2000 systems. 

#15 INFO July/Aug 1987 
1st Annual C.H.U.M.P. Magazine! Commodore 
& Amiga Survival Guide. Anne Westfall inter- 
view, TD1 Modula 2. Supra Hartl Drive. 

#17 INFO Nov/Dec 1987 
ANNUAL GAMES ISSUE! GEOS Update. 
16/32 bit comparison. CI 28 ROM upgrades, 
B.E.S.T. Accounting. Word Writer 3, D1GA! 

#16 INFO Jan/Feb 1988 
Desktop Publishing & wordprocessors (part I). 
Virus diagnosed, Geos Update. C64 Power Car- 
tridges. C12R Superpak ll. 

#19 INFO Mar/Apr 1988 
Desktop Publishing & wordprocessors (part 2), 
Leo Schwab interview. GEOS Update, 1CT hard 
drive. Digital SuperPak2.Thoughtform. 

#20 INFOMay/Jun 1988 
Desktop Video: Tillers, genlocks, converters, 
C64 slide show programs. GeoStul'f. AmigaDos 
1.2 Bugs. Joel Hagen tutorial. 

#22 INFO Sep/Oct 1988 
Digitizing, Mac VS. Amiga. GeoSluff. Over 50 
reviews for C64. C 1 2S. and Amiga computers. 
INFOmania Game Tips! BRYCE debut! 

#23 INFO Nov/Dec 1988 
\NNI Al. GAMES ISSUE!! INTO Mania Game 
Tips. New Products. News & Views. 

#24 INFO Jan/Feb 1989 
Amiga 3D Graphics Round Up. Reichart Von 
Wolfsheild interview, GeoStuff, SuperBase Pro. 
Spectrascnn, Sky Travel. 

#25 INFO Mar/Apr 1989 
Amiga Animation Round Up. Rodney Chang in- 
terview, C128 T.H.I.S., GeoCalc 128, Dr. Term 
Pro. AC/BASIC. Microfiche Filer Plus. 

#26 INFO May/June 1989 
Paint Program Round Up. Loren Lovhaug inter- 
view. Removable Mass Storage, 1 58 1 Toolkit, 
MicroLawver. WillMaker. Pen Pal. 







BACK ISSUES 



#27 INFO Jul/Aug 1989 
3rd Annual C.H.U.M.P. Magazine! Dale Luck 
interview, Sound & Music. Fractals, GcoPro- 
grammer, Silentwriter LC890, Transcript. 

#28 INFO Sept/Oct 1989 
Video Bool Camp! High-End Amiga Expan- 
sion. Gail Wellington interview. 3D options. 
Home Town, Viking 1. A-Max, Anti-Virus, 
V.l.P. 

#29 INFO Nov/Dec 1989 
Annual Games Issue! Chris Crawford interview. 
SFX Sound Expander, The Write Stuff 1 28, 
Toshiba Express Writer 301, RawCopy, Mac-2- 
Dos. 

#30 INFO Jan/Feb 1990 
Amiga DeskTop Publishing Tools, LOGO. 
A590 Hard Drive. Dual Serial Board. Abacus 
Books. Twin Cities I2S book, 

#31 INFO July 1990 
Amiga 3000, Amiga Vision. AmigaDOS 2.0. 
RJ. Mical interview, Ray-Tracing, TV*Text 
Pro. CanDo. CrossDOS. FraclalPro. ScanLab 
100. 

#32 .info September 1990 
First issue of monthly All-Amiga .info\ Turbo 
Silver. Laurence Garlel interview. Page Stream 
1.8, Power PC Board, introducing CDTV all 
new .info Technical Support section by Sullivan 
and Zamara. 

#33 .info October 1990 
Fractal Frontiers, Inside AmigaVision. Peggy 
I lerriuglon's new Music & Sound column. Pro 
Video Post, The An Department. Archivers. 

#34 .info November 1990 
Tile Video Toaster Cometh ! George Chris- 
tenscn interview. ProWrile 3.0, Synlhia II, Sax- 
on Publisher. Pro Draw 2.0. Hard Disk Man- 
agement. 

#35 .info Dec90'Jan91 
Annual Games Issue! The year's top 25 games. 
Exclusive - Amiga Unix. Ballietech Center. 
F.Ian Performer. GVP Impact II SCSI RAM 
Controller. 

#36. info February 1991 

Image Wrapping. The Amiga in Europe. Victor 
Osaka interview, World's first Video Toaster 
Show. Reuderman. A-Max II. 
#37 .info March 1991 
Ellison I lorne profile. Video Toaster part 2, 
MINIX 1 .5, Pagestream 2.0. Power PC Board, 
Animation Studio. AudioMasler 111 & E-Z FM. 



#38 .info April 1991 

Amiga Networks. Draw4D, Aulo-Scripl. J. 
Hopkins profile. Video Toaster part 3. WOC. 
CES, UNIX shows, MacroPaint. Big Belly 
RAM. 

#39 .info May 1991 
Special Music & Sound issue! New Products 
from Casio.Dr. T's, and Blue Ribbon. Plus 
Imagine. Arrow 1 500, Bodega Bay, and Profes- 
sional Page 2.0. 

#40. info June 1991 
DPaim IV! CDTV, Ilyperbook. Xetcc CD- 
ROM. Amiga UNIX, AmigaDOS Scripts. 
TransWrile. RAM facts, and Amiga World Evpo 
NY. 

#41 .info July 1991 
DCTV. Proper Grammar, PageStream 2, 1 , Im- 
age Processing. Trumpcard 500. Supra Drive 
500XP, CI3000 Film Recorder. Art Dept. Profes- 
sional. 

#42 .info August/September 1991 
Desktop Publishing. Networking, Monster Flop- 
pies, Story Teller Fred Wagner. CDTV hardware, 
Art Department Professional. 

#43 .info October 1991 

Setting up a video studio, SpectraColor. Timeline 
of History. World Vista. The Works of Shake- 
speare, Bars and Pipes Professional. 
xMIDl/SMPTE. Unix. BPTRs. Perfect Grammar. 

#44 .info November 1991 
Paint RotindUp, CD+G, Music in multimedia, 
Chromakey. Unix. Ami-Back, Flashback, Dev- 
Con. 

#45 .info December 1991 
Superbase 4.0. Bars and Pipes Professional. 
Toaster Paint. DCTV Paint. Showinaker. Scala. 
Dr. Wcllman and Top Ten Games of I99 1. 




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■■■I 



CONTENTS 

page 52 

Workbench Wonders: 
It's UI-GUI-Good! 

Chris Zamara and Nick 
Sullivan hold forth on 
the ins and outs of 
Workbench icons. 

page 57 

The Programmer 
Perplex: DOS 2.0 

Jim Butterfield 
addresses the problem 
of when to start 
programming for 
AmigaDOS 2.0. 

page 59 

ARexx: 
Seven Come Eleven 

Mark R. Brown uses 
ARexx to solve a 
problem and generate 
some real-world data. 



Bllnfo release 1,3: 



i 



ara 



Workbench Wonders: 

It's UI-GUI-Good! 

by Chris Zamara and 
Nick Sullivan 



If you've used the Amiga at all, 
you've probably seen icons on 
the Workbench and used them 
to run programs with a double-click, 
copy files using click-drag-release, and 
do other basic operations. The Work- 
bench's icons can do a great deal more 
than that, however, and contain power- 
ful mechanisms that can give the easy 
'point-and-shoof Workbench interface 
much of the power of the CLI {com- 
mand-line interface). 



TVPE Project 

SIZE 

in bytes 499 
in blocks 1 



I! 



I NOT ARCHIVED 



READABLE 

HRITEABLE 
DELETEABLE 



COMMENT 






DEFAULT TOOL H2:Utili ties/Notepad 




.info files 

An icon appears on the Workbench 
for any '.info' icon file that may be on 
any of the mounted floppy disks, hard 
drive partitions, RAM disk, or other vol- 
umes. 

Consider a hypothetical wordproces- 
sor program called 'GizmoWord.' It 
shows up on the Workbench as an icon 
because there are actually two related 
files: the program itself, called 'Giz- 
moWord,' and the icon file called 'Giz- 
moWord. info.' 

The specially-created icon file tells 
Workbench the appearance of the icon 
and where to position it on the Work- 
bench screen. The name of the icon file 
tells Workbench what program to run 
('GizmoWord') when you double-click 
on the icon. 

Tools and Projects 

The wordprocessor icon is called a 
'Tool' icon because it corresponds to an 
executable program, which is called a 
'Tool' in Workbench jargon. Now sup- 
pose you create a document in the 
wordprocessor, and save it using the 
file name 'StaffMemo' (by choosing 
'Save' from the wordprocessor's 'Pro- 
ject' menu). When you look at the 
Workbench screen now, you'll see an 
icon for the 'StaffMemo' document, 
which is different in appearance from 
the GizmoWord Tool icon. When you 
double-click the StaffMemo icon, the 
GizmoWord program will be run, and 
the StaffMemo document will be 



The icon 

information 

window 

under 1.3. 

The 2.0 version 

is similar. 



automatically loaded in. 

The StaffMemo icon is called a 'Pro- 
ject' icon because it corresponds to a 
document, or picture, or whatever pro- 
ject you create using a Tool. Like a 
Tool, a Project consists of the project 
file itself ('StaffMemo'} and an associ- 
ated icon file ('StaffMemo. info'). Unlike 
a Tool, however, double-clicking the 
StaffMemo icon does not cause Work- 
bench to run a program called 
'StaffMemo.' Instead, it runs the pro- 
gram used to create the Project, in this 
case 'GizmoWord.' How does Work- 
bench know the name of the program 
to run? 

Default tool 

Every project icon contains the name 
of a 'Default tool,' Ihe program to run 
when the icon is simply double-clicked. 
When you save a project, the default 
tool is normafly set to the name of the 
program automatically. It is a simple 
matter to change the icon's default tool 
yourself, however, if you want to make 
the icon use a different program or a 
program in a different drawer or disk. 

To change a project icon's default 
tool, just click once on the icon to select 
it, then choose the Info item in the 
Workbench menu. (With AmigaDOS 
V2.0, it's Information... in the Icons 
menu.) The icon Info requester that 
appears lets you view and modify a 
number of characteristics about the 
icon and related file. 

The default tool will be shown in a 



52 .infO MARCH 1992 




text box; you can click on this and 
change the name of the default tool to 
the name of the program that should be 
run when the icon is double-clicked. 
Click on the SAVE gadget to remove 
the requester and update the icon with 
the new information. 

If the Tool is not in the same directory 
as the Project, the default tool name 
must specify the program exactly, 
including the entire pathname. So, if 
the GizmoWord program is in a 'WP' 
directory on your hard drive volume 
'DHO:,' the default tool would be 
'DHO:WP/GizmoWord.' 

AmigaDOS 2.0 makes it a little easier 
to specify a default tool. The current 
command path is searched, so that if 
the 'WP' directory was in your path 
(usually set up in the Startup- 
Sequence), you would only have to 
specify the name 'GizmoWord' instead 
of the entire pathname 'DH0:WP/ 
GizmoWord.' 

You can override a Project's default 
tool by extended selection of a Tool 
icon along with the Project icon. Simply 
first click on the desired Tool icon, then 
double-click Ihe Project icon while hold- 
ing down either Shift key on the key- 
board. This will force the use of the 
specified tool regardless of the Pro- 
ject's default tool. For example, if you 
create a document with GizmoWord, 
but wish to load it into the Notepad text 
editor, simply click on the Notepad icon, 
then hold Shift and double-click on the 
Project icon. The Notepad program will 
run and automatically load in the 
selected Project. The default tool in the 
Project icon remains undisturbed, so a 
subsequent double-click of the Project 
icon will still launch the GizmoWord 
program as before. 

Double-clicking a Project 

As you've seen, double-clicking a 
Project icon with a properly set up 
default tool causes Workbench to run 
the specified tool automatically. Work- 
bench then sends a 'message' to the 
program telling it about the Project icon 
that was used to launch it. It is up to the 
program to do the right thing. In most 
cases, this means loading a project of 
the same name as the icon (without the 
'.info' extension, of course). 

Most programs that create icons for 



technical support 




Extended Selection 

Example: printing two text files 




1. Click on Tool icon 

2. Hold down either SHIFT key 

3. Click on first Project icon 

4. Double-click on second 
Project icon 




Printing two 

files is easily 

done using 

only 
mouseclicks. 



projects will, in fact, handle double- 
clicked projects in this way. It is impor- 
tant to realize, however, that this is 
done by the program itself and not by 
Workbench; once Workbench tells the 
program about what project has been 
used, its responsibilities are over. 

When you launch a program by dou- 
ble-clicking a Project icon, keep in mind 
that a new copy of the program will be 
loaded from disk and executed. If the 
program is already running, this is gen- 
erally nof the way to load in a new doc- 
ument; you should choose 'Open' in the 
program's 'Project' menu instead. Oth- 
erwise, you will run multiple copies of 
the program, using up additional 
memory for each one. For this reason, 
launching a program by double-clicking 
a Project icon is less useful for things 
like wordprocessors, where documents 
are loaded and saved often. On the 
other hand, Project icons are the ideal 
method for launching one-shot applica- 
tions like picture viewers, text display 
programs, and sound-effect or anima- 
tion players. 

Tool Types 

Underneath the default tool name in 
the info requester lies the 'TOOL 
TYPES' box. In AmigaDOS V2.0, a 
scrolling list is used, but the principle is 
the same. Any number of tool types can 
be specified, and each supplies a sin- 
gle piece of information to the tool. 



Try a working example: bring up the 
icon Info requester for the 'Notepad' 
tool (normally found in the 'Utilities' 
drawer of the Workbench 1 .3 system 
disk). Click on 'ADD' to add a new tool 
type, and enter 'WINDOW=01 0,010, 
600,100." Click on SAVE to save the 
new tool type in the icon. Now, when 
you run Notepad by double-clicking its 
icon, the window opens at the position 
and size specified by the WINDOW tool 

type- 
Here are some other tool types rec- 
ognized by Notepad: FONT lets you 
change the default font, e.g. 'FONT= 
garnet. 9.' FLAGS lets you set default 
options e.g. 'FLAGS=draft|nowrap' to 
turn off automatic wordwrap and use 
draft quality print mode. Any or all of 
these tool types may be placed in the 
icon, and the tool types can be edited 
or deleted using the controls in the 
requester. The new V2.0 requester is 
more convenient, since it can display 
several tool types at once. 

How do tool types work? As with pro- 
ject icons launching a program, Work- 
bench simply gives the tool type infor- 
mation to the program being launched; 
it is then up to the program to interpret 
the information and act on it appropri- 
ately. Some programs may not use tool 
types at all - you would not be pre- 
vented from entering tool types into the 
icon, but they would simply be ignored. 
If a program does use tool types, they 

.in* 



.info MARCH 1992 53 



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WB71A&B: The A64 Package ■ A very complete 
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compatible with WB2.0. Now that you've traded In your C64, 
don'l loose all that software ttial took you years to compile. 
This software emulator actually runs taster than a (541 Amaze 
your C54 friendsl Two disk set, counts as two. 

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VOtfi Modelling ■ Vertex allows you la create 3D objects without using 
the abstract X. V and Z views. Saves in Sculpt-3D'4D, Turbo Silver, 
Imagine, LightWave. GEO and Wavefronl formats. MagicTween will 
melamoiphasize any two pictures by automatically animate the "in- 
between" frames. 

VD4: Video & Anim ■ Video DB will catalog all ol your videotepes. 
Slaie is. a sharp graphic ol a slate for your productions. CyroUtils splits, 
makes and gives info about ANIMs. RTAP lets you play large ANIMs 
on small memory machines. 

VQ3; Image Wills - let VideoTooisQnTap let you tap into the video 
power of your Amiga for fades, color and greybars as well as a plethora 
of other indespensable video functions. nifeGen will do professional 
crawling Mies. JPEG converts JPEG<r->24-bit IFF with amazing 
compression. ImageLab performs special effects on IFFs 
V02; SUHttOT* ■ Used to create Ihe "ore* the shoulder* graphic inserts 
alalhe ll:OQnews 

V01 : Graphics - Picbase will let you view and track ALL of your IFF 
pictures over all of those floppies! Freepaint is a Deiu*e-Pamt 
workalike. Agraph >s a powerful utility to produce snazzy graphs. 
FD74: Arcade Series - Ring War is an "Outer Limits" clone with 
vectorized graphics. MctherLode is a "Lode Runner" done with 50 
levels^ In BiitzTanks. they're coming at you from all directions!! Call in 
air stnkes and use your heavy artillery to survive! 
FD73: Arcade Series - Intruder Alenl is a MULTt-level 'Berserk" 
done. Features smooth gameplay. greal graphics & digitized sound l.'x. 
FD72: Sword of the Warlock - This is a demo version of a great 
public domain graphic dungeon adventure game. The adventure spans 
three diskettes and allows two players to go adventuring. The game 
has a 'Bards Tale 1 leel to it. Three disk set, counts as 2 Recju res 1 
meg of RAM and 2 floppy drives or RD. 

FD71A&B: Star Trek: TNG Trivia Challenge - So you think you know 
The Next Qertentiktft, huh'' Complete with fantastic sampled sounds 
and digitized images, this game even looks and sounds like a genuine 
Star Trek terminal! VERY thorough and complete' Counts as 2 disks. 
FD70: SpaceGames - Contains AmiGoids. >finally!< an Asteroids 
game that lakes advantage of the Amiga -totally configurable with great 
sound and grpahics. In Cosmoslruclion the object of the game is for 
each Cosmostruction team io acrjulre the most points while 
construction energy ducts between the space station and planetoids. 
FD69: MindGames - Had enough of shoot-em up blasting ga-nes 7 
Relax and lei these 21 games exercise your mind instead of your wrist. 
FD68: Potpourri ■ Eternal Rome is a strategic simulation of the Roman 
Empire including military, diplomatic, political, economic and social 
factors. Lord oi Hosts is a board strategy game for 2 players, In 
Moonshine, you've got to gel the hootch across Ihe state DM— a great 
rolling, scrolling driving game 1 

FD67: Arcade - Includes Llamatron a well-done 'Robc-tron' clone Hale 
is a 'terrilic' commercial grade ZaJtxon done with multiple levels/worlds 
and smooth diagonal scrolling. ..a 1 G I 

FD64: Games - Wizzy's Quest - a "great" 50 level game win great 
graphics, Cubus - a 3-dimensional Tetris type game (rotale and move 
in 3 dimensions). Husker Du - Colors and pattern rather than shape in 
this Tetns-esque game; 5 screens and 3 levels of difficulty Requires 
Fat Agnus fl Meg of Chip) 

F062: PomPom Gunner. An extremely smooth and well done World 
War II gunner simulation. Requires 1 megabyte of memory. 
WB109: VerseWise ■ Display, search and output The New Testament 
to texl files or your printer 

WB108: OclaMED - This breakthrough program doubles your Amiga's 
sound capabilities from 4 channels to an ear-popping 8 channels 1 All 
the renound editing capabilities of MED plus 4 more channels! If you 
thought your Amiga sounded good before.. .you aint heard nulhin h yet! 
WB1G7A&B: Educational - Drawmap is a program that generates 
representations such as hemispherical views, and orbital views ot the 
Earth's surface, complete with national boundaries Screens can be 
printed or saved to disk as standard IFF files. Full user-configurable 
online help facility. 6B020* version included. 2 disk set, counts as 1 ' 
WB106: Home Manager - This s a great all-in-one address book with 
an aulodiafer. notepad. to-do list'appoinlmenl scheduler homo inventory 
database and phone number dialer. Slightly crippled demo version. 
WB105A&B: Workbench 2.0 ExtfUiS ■ Seethe lop right of page 2 
for more info on these pnceless utilities to make Workbench 2,0 fly! 
WB104: GrabBag - O&A Trivia (requires AmigaVision) is a trivia game 
for 1/2 players. ..add your own questions to customize the difficulty 
level 1 Sysmfo is great for telling you how fastvslow your computer is. 



what boards are installed, chipsets, etc. AmiGazer will plot stars in 

the heaven from any position on earth complete with magnitudes and 

constellation identification. 

WB1Q3: Music - Contains 12 'great' Soundlracker MED music 

MiQDules.. .complete with programrnable.'shuTlie player.. .8 bit audio 

never sounded so hoi' Two disk set counts as two. 

WB102: Communications Contains [tie programs NComm 1.921 

and VT100-29B. Zmodem protocols. XPR protocol support, full 

VT100 emulation. NComm's script language is so powerful it comes 

with a script file that creates a full-featured BBS system. 

WB1Q1: Chemesthetics is a program mat displays molecules as a 

calotte model. This kind of display contains a certain esthetic 

attitude, even extremely poisonous molecules like nicotine and 

dioxine look quite nice. 

DD93: fBM ThrS demo. IBeM. will allow the running of MS-DOS 

software with Amiga programs 1 !! Comes complete with programs to 

turn your Amiga lloppy duves into 720K IBM compatahly drives. 

DD82: Unix - Contains a working demo ol Minix - a Unix workalike. 

Mini* is system call compatabie with V7 ol Unix, 

FD5: Tactical Games - BullRun - a Civil war battle game. Metro you 
play the role of a city planner. Build wisely and your system will be a 
success, but poor planning wilt lead to disaster and financial ruin. 
Very very habit forming. 

FD6: GAMES1 - This disk is chock full ol games including; Checkers. 
Clue, Grjld ■ A new slide thB pieces puzzle. Jeopard - An enhanced 
version of Risk. RushHour - Surprisingly addicting, and SpaceWar - 
Best descnbed as a cross between Combat-Tanks and asteroids. 
FD7: PACMAN - This disk contains several pacman type games 
including: PacMan@7. MazMan and Zonix 

FD9: Moria - This has great graphic controls, multiple spells, similar 
to Lam and Hack. Play time several weeks! 

FD10: HackLlle - A dungeon adventure game. Considered a must- 
have classic. This is the second release of this game on the Amiga. 
Great graphic interface. Play time several weeks! 
FD11: Las Vegas and Card Games • Las Vegas Craps - The best 
Las Vegas Craps simulation every written for any computer Contains 
extensive HELP features, Also Thirty ■One.VideoPokef and more- 
FD12A.FD12B: Star Trek, The Game - This is by Jar the best Star 
Trek game ever writien for any computer. It leaiures mouse control, 
good graphics, digitized sound effects and great gameplay. Counts as 
2 disks. Req. 1 Mb and two drives (or hd). 

FD13: Board Games ■ contains multiplayer Monopoly, Dominoes, 
Paranoids, and others 

FD14: Dungeon Master Hints and Arcade Games - DM maps, 
spells, ilem location, and hints and more, also on this disk, Hpalf - an 
a rkanoid breakout type game. Tri* - a Qfx type clone. 
FD17: Educational Games This disk includes several games for 
the younger members including geography, math, scence, and word 
games, also includes Wheel ol Fortune. 

FD20: Tactical Games fvtechForce(3-72}; A game that simutates 
combat between two or more giant, robot-like machines. Simple 
words cai't begin to give you the feel of piioting a 30 - 4D foot tall, fire 
breathing, earth shaking colossus that obeys your every whim. 
FD26-Areade Games • Marblesiide is a commercial quality game- 
similar to a Lucas game named PipeDreams, excellent payability and 
entertainment. Mgtanis-a small version of the same arcade game. 
SuperBreakout is a Prjng.Arkanrjids type game. 
FD27: Arcade Games - This d sk is Eoaded with some great games. 
Includes, Raceorama a great racing car game with len different 
courses, MiniBlast a helicopter guriship type clone. Shark in the same 
dass as froger. and SBreakcul the original breakout with more. 
FD29: Shool'em up's WWII - you're the pilot of a WWIi plane Hying 
through enemy territory, you've just been spoiled, good luck on you 
mission. SpKiller - try and penetrate enemy lines with this game, and 
RetaJialor ■ another great game. 

FD31 : Games! - Air Traffic Control - a good ATC simulation game, 
Black Jack Lab ■ a full featured set of card games, ChessTel - play 
chess with your friend m distant and remote places with this game 
and a modem, labymth - a well done text adventure game {like an 
intocom game), and MouseTrap ■ a 3d maze game. 
FD32:Flighl Simulator - Includes an instrument flight simufator for a 
DC10. 

FD33: Arcade Games - Ftreddy a mario brolhers type of game, 
Ger&rls a target practice game, PipeLino a German interpretation of 
Pipe Dreams, Tron a light cycles version, and wetroids a wonderful 
version of asteroids with a hilarious twist 

FD3S Omega (v 1.3) - A new outstanding dungeon and outdoors 
adventure game in a simifar ve n as hack, rouge, and moria. This 
version is considerably faster and better that air previous versicns- 
Play time several weeks or months. 

FD37a i b:Tacllcal Games - Empire (2.2w) This great game comes 
highly recommended. With a furl-graphic front end 
F038:Games - Cnbbage Master - A great cribbage game and tulor. 
Spades - a well done card came, ChineseCheckers - A computer 
version of this classic, Puzz - a slide piece puzzle game and 
construction set- 
FD39a & b: Star Trek, The New Generation - This is a. completely 



different version of Star Trek than thai found on FD1 2, This one was 

created by the German author Tobias Now with English instructing 

Excellent!!! Counts as two disks. Requites 51 2k memory. 

FD44: Game - Mechlight is an out ol this world role-playing 

adventure comparabla to hack and moria. The setting, interplanetary 

colonies and space stations. In your quest to explore the workJ, take 

time out to liberate bad guys of their most valuable possessions, 

engage in a mortaf combat or two against robots and alien life forms. 

pick up a new amiga 90O0. Most of ail , don't forget to stay alive... 

FP49:Chaos Cheats - This disk contains an everything you waited 

to know about cheat set lor Chaos Strikes Back, including full maps. 

spells, object locations, super characters and more. 

FD50: Submarine Game - Seatance. ore and a hall years in the 

making, this is an outstanding submarine tactical game Commercial 

quality, highly recommended. 

FD52: Classics Games - PetersQuest a well done Mario brothers 

type of game, Jymbc a two player missile command clone, and 

Vstank a tank commander game. 

FDS3: Great Arcade - On ihis disk is a wonderful implementation of 

the ever popular classic arcade game Defender Also contain Air 

Race a WWII flying ace arcade game, ana Psycoblasl new creation 

idea game. 

FD56: Arcade - Includes SpaceWar. HueyRaid is a well done 

helicopter arcade game. Power Pong's a great expanded pong game. 

FD57: Arcade Games - Includes 2 truly commercial quality games. 

MegaBall, an Arkanoid-ish game, features 5 musical scores, multiple 

levels and addicting gameplay Gravity Attack is a psychadellic trip 

through several different worlds-each distinctly different. 

FD59: GAMES! - Includes Steinschlag; a great Tetris clone from 

Germany with music SCombat: simulate battle between up to 40 

pfayers & monsters Impenum Romanum: Battle up to 4 players for 

control of the Mediterranean in this Risk-esque game. 

FD59: Game Potpourri ■ Xenon III is an almost exact done of the 

commercial game of the same name. , a great shootemup. 

Crossword will take lists ol words & automatically generate word- 

search puzzles for any Epson compalable printer. 

FDB0: Games ■ In Nebula, race over a 3d world to destroy enemy 

installations interferon; a great Dr. Mario clone. Enigma: is it a 

gameor a puzzle? 

FD61 : Games - Solitaire: great graphics, plays two versions. Kllde: 

an inleresting piece of eye candy. Extreme violence: 2 player kill or 

bekilled game YATC; A Tetris clone with Artifical Intelligence. 

Genesis; create realistic 3d fractal worlds. 

WB4 :Tetecommumnication - This disk contains several excellent pd 

communication programs designed to get you on line quickly and 

easily. Access ( 1 .42) - A very nice ANSI lerm progiam based on 

Comm v1 34, but with the addition of transfer protocols. Comm 

(1i.34) - Last version of one of the best public domain 

communications programs ever made on the Amiga. Handshake 

(2.12a) Handshake is a Full leatured vT52/lC0/1u2/220 

WB5 - Fonts #1- Several fonts (35) lor the Amiga, also included are 

live PageStream fonts.and ShowFont a font display program 

WB6: Video Fonts #2 - ShowFont|4 0) This program allows you Io 

quickly and painlessly view all 256 characters m a typical font, Laige 

AmigaDossysiem fonts (many up to56pts) 

WB7: Clip Art - This disk is loaded wilh black and white clip Bit An 

mdudes. trees, watches, tools, US and State maps, and more, 

WB9:lcons ■ Truly a multitude of various types and kinds Also 

ncludes IconMiestBr. IconLab, and others great utilities Io help 

generate icons, 

WBl0:Virus Killers ■ The lalest and best VirusX(4.0). Kv{2,1). and 

ZeroVirus III, 

WB11: Business - Clerk(4.0). finally a full featured business 

accounting PD program for ihe small to medium company, Includes 

receivables, payables, end of month and uch mote, 

WB12: Disk Utilities This great disk is loaded with wonderlul 

ulilities lor everything including making disk labels, disk cataloging, 

disk optimizing, disk and file recovery archive and organizing, and all 

sorts of file manipulation A must have 1 

WB13: Printer Drivers and Generator over 70 aitfuTert drive's, 

and if these don't do il. with PrtDrvGen you can make your own, 

WB15: Business ■ Thcs disk contains a spreadsheet, a database, a 

project time management program and financial analysts (stocks). 

WB16: Business - This disk contains an inventory manager, a loan 

analysis program, a great calendar/scheduler a rolodex program, and 

pennywise a good 'Cash Book' accounting Icr home or office. 

WB18: WordText Processors - This d»sk contains the besl editors. 

I ncludes. Tex (Plus (v2.2e) a lull fealured word processor, Dmefvl .35) 

a great programmers editor with strong macro fealures F TexEO(v2.8) 

an enhanced Emacs type editor, and a spell checker. 

WB20: General Interest - DiskSalv Vl.42 adrsk recovery program 

for all Amiga file systems, FixDisk V1 ,0 another file recovery program 

with features DiskSalv doesn't have. 3DLook gives a 3D appearance 

to your WorkBench, Clean VI. 01 a program to de-fragment memory. 

Tracer - trace any part of an image. 

WB22: Fonts #3 - Several more great fonts. These, like the other 

lent disks work great w.;h Dpaint and WYSIWYG word processors. 

WB23: Graphics and Plotling - Ploi {20b] a ihree dimensional 

mathematical lunction plotter. Can plot any user defined function, 

BezSurf2 - produce awesome pictures of objects one coufd turn on a 

lathe. Can also map iff image liles onio any surface lhal it can draw 

Now compatible with most 3D packages, and VScreen - makes a 

virtual screen anywhere, great for DTP 

WB2S:ErJucallonal - On this disk are two programs thai can 

generate maps of differing types, World Data Base uses the CIAs 

data base to generate detailed maps of any entered user global 

coordinates. Also Paradox a great demonstration of Albert Einstein 

General Theory of Relativity. 

WB26: Disk UHlih'es #2 - MrBackup. KwickBackup - two well done 

ulilities ta do harddisk and lloppy disk backups. FileMast - a binary 

file editor. Labelprinler - Disk label printer with very powerful 

features. 

WB27: Nagel 26 Patrick Nagal pictures of beauliful women. 

WB29: Graphics and Sound This disk has several different 

Mandelbrot type programs lor generating stunning graphics, includes. 

MandelMounlains - a realistic terrain generator, Fracgen - generated 

recursive fractals from user input. Mandelbrot and Tmandet - two fast 

mandelbrot generators, also Mcetra - the best IFF display program to 

date, will display ALL IFFs including Dynamic HAM, and Sound - a 

great IFF sound player, will play anything Try this disk 1 

WB33Circuit Board Design - several terrific routines for the 

electronic enthusiast. Including PCBtool - a circuit board design tool, 

LogicLab - circuil logic lesier. and Mead (1 26) a well done new 

refease of this PD CAD program, now comes with predrawn common 

circuit components for insertion into schematics. 

WB34; Utilities - Several well done ulilities, some will require 

mederale knowledge of a CLI or Shell lor setup. Chatier Box this 

one will play any user defined sound after any event (ie. disk insert. 

mouse cfick, disk removal...}, . Artm - The Amiga real time monitor, 

gives you full control ol the Amiga OS. very powerful program. HBlpef 

- help program to make learning the CLI easier, and more! 

WB35: 3d Graphics ■ This d'Sk contains several neal programs to 

use with your 3d mode I rng/rayl racing programs 3dFonts - Full vector 

lonl sel for use with 3d programs, FoniMaker - make 3d fonts from 

any system font. MakeSDShape - create 3d shapes from any image. 

Dumpio I FF - create 3d animations preserves pallet, and WprldSd - a 

demo program of a front end for use wilh DKBRender. 

WB3S: Graphics - On this disk are several programs lo create 

stunning or aphj cat images including. MPath - creates swirling galaxy 

images. Roses • produce an unlimited number of variations of images 



thai a symmetrically similar to a rose, SimGen - display those 

speciacular images as pari ot your workbench screen, and RayShade 

• a very good raytractng program, create your own beautiful 3d QfSflWc 

models with ihis one 1 ^ 

WD37: Educational - Educaiionai games and puzzles thai cover 

math, geography, spelfing. and books. Ages 6-15 

WB38: Plotting and Graphics Plotxy is the most prjwerljl lull 

leaiured pJottmg package. Used by many colleges and universities. A 

welcome addition to our library" Highly recommended Plans - a 

incredibly well done Computer Aided Drafting program very lull 

featured. TesseSalor ■ a program that helps generates fantastic 

looking, recursive W.C- Ecsher type piclures 

WB39: Music - I' rrtui tracker is a German ottering of an exquisitely well 

done p/agram that allows you to pfay music on your Amiga with CD 

like controls Lets you strip out music Irom your favorite games or 

othe'S and include !hem in your music library 

WB40: Music - "CD on a disk'. 90 minutes ot modem music on this 

well presented collection Requires 2 drives or HO. 

WB41: Music - MEO an incredibly well done, full featured music 

editor. Create your own stunning music directJy on your ihe Amiqa 

Similar to SoundTracker but belter. Very powerful easv to use 

6rogram, Ver. 3.10. 
/B43:Buslness ■ This disk contains AnalynCaic - probably Ihe most 
powerlul spreadsheet urogram on the Amiga. A full featured 
spreadsheet with many feaiures expected in a commercial packncie 
Requires 1.2 MB of mema'y! 

WB4fi:Cllp Art ■ HighRes clip art with Ihe following motifs - 
eTbei!ishmen;s [borders, dodads ,...).. peopfe. and transportation 
WB48: Clip Art - HighRes clip art with ihe following motifs - Holidays 
music, medrcal. and misc. 

WB49flbc:Animatlon Sampler On this three disk sampler sel 
(counts as two disks) are some of the best animations that have beer 
created over Ihe last three years. Several examples of "Movie" lype 
animations some with spectacular raytraced reality (coolroby watch 
spigot and egg) Also several European slyle or •Demo" animation with 
incredibJe graphics ana outstanding electronic music (akrilioht 
copersme. doc. dps20 1 0. impact, and logodemaj These truly show off 
Ihe creative edge of an Amiga 1 

WB5Q: Animation - Seven of the besi eurcpean slyle animations or 
"Demos", including ■ scientific 451. subway (a US. entrant, also our 
favorite), sunride. trtrstdemo H tnighr. waves, andwoow. 
WBS3:Graphics ■ Rayiracing programs generate absolutely stunning 
realistic looking planes, rackets, buddings.... ard surreal images often 
consoling oi highly polished Spheres and objects. C-I_igh| is the most 
powerful EASY-TO-USE of it's kind we have seen to date. This as 
easily better, and more full featured, than similar commercial programs 
costing m the hundreds ol dollars. Also, sMovie - a full featured video 
text tiller similai lo Pro V dec, Broadcast Tiller Great video scrollmg 
wipes, special elfucts. and mare... 

WB54 Printing ■ This disk contains several routines to help with (he 
chore of printing Includes Gothic ■ Finally a Banner printer for the PD! 
P'rmiStudio -a well implemented afl-purpose printer-utility with a very 
comlonable graphic interface and many advanced features, Lila - with 
ease, print ASCII files to a PostScript printer, ard many more. 
WB55:Appllcatlon • XCopylll ■ a full featured disk copier, make 
backups of copy prelected disks. RoadRoule - find [he quickest route 




Anti-Virus 
Now Only $19.95 

&<&&& . INFO Sep 89 
•*/•• , Amiga Resource Oct89 

AnthVirusfc) is no! Public Domain 



from one city lo another, highway description included. Diary - a diary 

program like "Oougy Howard M.D\ Cal - a calendar program, 

Wagman - a database tailored to maintain records on articles and 

publications. 

WB57:Animation - This disk has several "Demo" style animations. 

Including, Slitter, Lolly, Sun5, vertigo, vortex, and xenmorph. 

WBSS^Business - contains a great, very full featured slock market 

technical analysis and tracking program, also an appointment 

calendar, and more. 

WB61 intermediate Utif Hies ■ Includes ptograms to help to drasiicaly 

decrease flicker in interlace and hi-res modes {antifiick). an Atari-sl 

emulator, an oprom programmer, turn your amiga into an eight 

channel digital data analyzer or ocriloscope, and more. 

WB6Z:Midl Utilities Several useful midi utilities including, programs 

to transler to and Irom several music programs to midi. a midi sysex 

handler, a midi recorder with limeoase display midi info, file 

sequence player, and a few scores. 

WB63:Dlsk Utilities #U - Several highly recommended programs to 

aid in removing duplicate files from your hard drive, performing file 

backups, Binary editing, last formatting, lile recovery, disk track 

recovery, and forced DISK VALIDATION of corrupt disks. 

WB66:tcons #2- Lot s of neat icons. Also, several wonderful programs 

that to let you create you' own icons, modify and manipulate icons and 

info structures. 

WB6a:Muslc Utilities ■ several good unices for the Amiga music 

enthusiast. Includes, Noiselracker - a great music creation program. 

Soni>r.2MO0 - converts Soni« to .mod fries which then can be used by 

noisetracker, scundtraker, and MED, SpeakerSim - a speaker design 

tool demo. Wondersound is an additive harmonic instrument design 

tool with a separate envelope design window and 16 relative harmonic 

strength and phase angle controls. 

WB69: Music - This disk has over 90 minutes of classical and modern 

electronic music tor you Amiga 

WB70:Desk Top Pub - Atcp ■ transfer Macintosh screen fonts. Mac Or 

IBM format AFM metric files, lo Amiga screen fonts and PPage 

.metric files. With this program open door to the libraries ol Adobe and 

PostScript type 1 . Calendar ■ month templates in PS form. Post ■ a full 

leatured post script die display and print utility. 

WB75: Music - over TOO instruments files (.inst) and sample sound 

files (,ss) for your musicjprograms. 

WB76: Applications - This disk contains Stichery a often requested 

knitting design program. Lotto - a rather complete tottery tracking and 

prediction utility. SSS - this screen capture program can grab almost 

any screen including games, Today - a personal calender, Tarot ■ 

fortune teller, and Grammar ■ grammar checker 

WB79: Home & Business Accounting! ■ Includes Ckbacct • the most 

complete checkbook accounting program going. LCDCalc • this well 

done calculator has a very large display and operates from the 

keyboard or mouse, Mileage master ■ monitor your automobile 

mileage with this mileage fog. Grammar • a grammar checker, and 

WorWlirne - And oul what time it is in up to 50 gTobal cities. 

WB81: Great Applications - DataEasy a very easy to use. da:abase 



program. Don t let the ease of use fool you, Ihis is a very lull featured 
database program including lull primer control for address labels and 
maH merge applications. Also includes. TypeTut a good typing lutor. 
RLC a lull featured label primer. Banner, a multi-font banner maker 
and Budget a home accounting in a program. Highly recommended. 
WB32: Animations - Four lull length well done 'movie" slyle 
animations Including. Coyote, Jugglerh. GtiostPool, and Mechanix 
Two disk set, counts as one 1 

WBB3: Computer Art this disk has some of the best Amiga 
geneodsd computer ad that we have collected m the past 5 years. 
WB85: Graphics - Contains several programs for manipulaling 24 Bit 
color images (fiam-fl) and a rather nice Iff Image processing package 
WB86; Amiga Vision Contains the Centurion Press. An Amiqa 
newspaper by Lou Wallace 

WBBSabc: The Complete Bible A three disk set. with the entire text 
ol the New Testament and Old Testament. Great search utilities 
Three disk set, counts as three. 

WB90: Rippers. SlrJppers and Beats - For Ihe Amiga music 
enthusiast, this disk contains many programs designed strip music 
from your favonie games and programs, Music can then be played 
with your favorite Pd Music program. Also contains Drums, a very nice 
drum machine Th s disk requires some knowledge of the CLI 
WB93: Workbench Extras #2 Th.s disk contains the utilities that 
Commodore shoufd have shipped with the Amiga; VirusX4 Snap 
FixOisk (recover torruptdeleled files). Disk Optimizer (Happy & hard), 
Machlll (screen blanker, holkey. mouse accel , macro, clock utility) 
GOMF (a gurubuster)and PrmtStudio. 




It's Here! It's Here! 
Release 2.04 of AmigaDOS for 
the A500/A2000H! Includes 
ROMS, disks and full- 
documentation. Requires 
installation. U.S. orders only. 
$95.00 



SONY 

Blank Disks 

DSDD 

10 for $8.90 (.89 cents ea) 

25 for $18.90 (.76 cents ea) 

50 for $34.90 (.70 cents ea) 

100 for $68.00 (.68 cents ea) 

Ho sriipoing charge on USA blank dtsk orders Canada 
and Mexico add 5- 5 5 each. Other foreign add 3 50 ea 



WB95: Checkbook Accountant 2.1 This is definitely commercial 
grade; we've seen many checkbook programs and Ihis Is absolutely 
the besl. Fid budgeting, iransaction recording and report generation 
WS96: Dupers Contains Xcopylll & Mib which will backup copy 
protected programs FreeCopy removes copy protection from several 
programs, and SuperDuper wiJl crank-out fast AmigaDOS copies 
WB98: Business ■ Includes BBasell a nice, powerful database. 
BiiCafc-a personal or mortgage loan calculator with amortization 
capabilities. Loop--a flowchart maker. Formmaker - design 
professional forms on your Epson LQ-25Q0 compatible printer. 
WB99: Lifestyles Includes AGene-'amily tree program that tracks 
up to 630 peopie'marriages/etc- Landscape is a CAD program to 
create gardenslandscapes Loom simulates an B harness loom; 
experiment with pattern design in an instant feedback environment 
WB1Q0: CsllgarlPFrODemo ■ Can't afford S3. 000- lo see if the 
granddaddy of3D rendering software is for you? Then try trie demo 
version of Ihis renowned modeler thai the pro's rety On< No built-in 
save function, requires S8020+ processor, 

DD45: AREXX Programs This disk contains several useful arexx 
programs and examples, PopCLI4 - The latest of a must have utility, 
DD47: Pascal - This disk contains everything needed to program in 
Pascal, includes. A6Sk ( 1 .2) SBOXJO assembler. Blink Sinking software 
and PCQ ( 1 0) a modest Pascal sub-set compiler.. 
DD49: C Compiler ■ contains zc(1.0t] fully K&R. zcc(l.O) 'ro^: end 
A68k(1 2) assembler, Blink linker 

DD50: AReKJC #2 - a must have sel ol tutorials on ARexx ard several 
useful examples and utilities for ARexx development 
DD51 : Circuit Analysts - Aspice (2,3) A full featured program for 
elecirc circuit analysis. 

DD52: Scientific ■ Includes Elements - an incredibly well done 
periodic table program with source. Scienlific plotting - over SOOk ol 
Lattice C source routines that can be included in your own programs. 
OD54: Compression - This disk is loaded with all of the best file 
compression programs and aids for the Amiga. Many of the programs 
can be used by the new user, Includes Arc(2.3}. Lharc(I.O)-, 
Lhwaip<1.03). Pkan(TC), PowerPacker(2 3a) a must have by all. 
Zlp(I.O), Warp{2„04). and Zoo(2.0] Also IFFcrunch an excellent 
compression for IFF dies, 
DD55: ARP On ihis disk you will find the complete ArpRelS 



■ WB1Q5A&B: Workbench 2,0 Extras #2 I 

This set contains the programs that should have been included I 
I with WB 2,0 These powerful utilities take full advantage of Ihe ! 
| many new capabilities that are available in Workbench 2.0 

I Tool Manager - a 'wonderful' utilrty lo add programs to your J 
TOOL menu, create a collection ol icons on the workbench lo ■ 
| easily launch frequently used programs. ..and mucn. much * 

■ more! A true must have utility''!— ALL of our Amigas rely I 
1 heavily on this utility. » 
| fcon Enhances Workbench s "Show AM" to display over 40 \ 

■ drsiinct icons lor different lypes of files (text, graphic, source I 
! files, sound samples, libraries, etc.. etc.) f 
I Font Editor- Creata'edrt bitmap fonts with lull color supponi 

| Screen Blankers - ala fractals and splinersf No more boring 1 
black screen Colorful, interesting and highly hypnotic effects! | 

■ Requester Enhancers - no more stale 'please insert volume" ■ 
J requesters-these are animated requesters lor ail of the ' 

■ system's requesters. jj 

■ CPUSJii speeds up text displays for owners ol 68020+ CPUs l 
| Wallpaper - put workbench on top of any IFF picture! ' 

■ SafeReboot - adds a safe way to reboot your computer m can I 

■ greatly reduce disk validation errors! | 
I Sysfnlo see what's under the hood of your Amiga and see ■ 
I how fasl they are. 3 

I Public Screen Utils allow severai separate programs lo I 
share the same screen. 
| — — — — Twojdiskse^ counts as bra disks. ' 

release including the full user decs, the full Developers guide ARP is 

the official AmigaDOS Resource Project (ARP) release 1.3. ARP 

makes many improvements to AmigaDOS and makes your system 

easier lo use from the CLI 

D057; Advanced Utilities ■ Msh - like Cross-dos. copies files to and 

from MS-DOS, PalNTSC - convert any pal program lo NTSC and vice 

versa, Also several utilities that improve your startup-sequence, plus 

25 more programs. 

DD62: Basic and Xscheme - Cursor ■ a full featured Amiga Basic 

compiler sbasic and (text - several wonderful routines lo help in basic 

programed, and Xscheme ■ en interpreted object onented language. 

DD64: Amiga Programmers Manual - The fully comprehensive 

Amiga programming manual with source code examples and easy to 

understand tutorials' 

DD65* C Tutorials - Several well done tutorials on how lo program the 

Amiga Includes tutorials and working examples on device drivers. IFF 

rBadsrwnies. sound and arcade game implementation, double 

Buffering, and others. A must have for Amiga Programmers. 

DD66; Programming ToolBox • Many programs to help in your 

development efforts (most lor C some for basic) Includes programs to 

generate requesters, an incredible sprrtemaker toolbox, to greatly aid 

compiling, convert DPaint brushes to C structures, a great library 

manager, and manv more wonderful ume savers' 

DD69:Advanced Utilities ■ SeiNet and Parlstet ■ Connect two Amiga's 

and share resources, MemMomtor ■ Similar to WFrag but greatly 

improved, Selector ■ pui menus on your workbench screen, and more. 

OD71 A4B:C Compiler - This disk contains DICE. Matthew Dillon's 

full featured, powerful C compiler and environment system. 2 Disks, 

counts as 2. 

□D72: VT Emulators - Contains three powerful full featured VT 

emulators, with many advanced teatuies including Kermii. Xmodem 

and Tektronix protocols VaxTemt, VLT. and more. 

0077; Fortran - Contains a fu I featured FORTRAN77 environmental 

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dependent 68000 assembler. 

DD78; Menus & System Enhancements ■ Several neat programs to 

aid in launching programs from special icons (Next computer style), 

adding WorkBench menus and more. Also conlains many useful 

programs to determine operation system conliguration. memory 

usage, load and many other important utilizations. 

DD79abcd: Amiga C Tutorial ■ This is Ihe most comprehensive C 

language, Amiga orieniafed set of tutorials available. Includes full 

working examples, source code and an incredible sel of lessons. 

Included are full discussions and examples of every topic on Amiga 

programming. Four disk set, counts as three. 

DD5g: VFon) System - A font rendering system that extends the 

Amiga so that it will be able to use vectorized outline fonts. Fasi 

rendering, rotating, and Sizing. Use in your own programs! 

DDSl : ARexjr, Tutorial - Includes several sample Arexx scripts and 

sample programs. Also includes APig; a library thai gives you access 

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will be explained in that program's doc- 
umentation. 

Project Tool Types 

Setting Notepad's tool types was 
done in the Notepad Tool icon. But Pro- 
ject icons can have tool types, too. With 
Notepad, that means you can use one 
set of options when the program is run 
on its own, and a different set for each 
project ('note') you save. 

To see how this works, try an experi- 
ment: 

© Run Notepad by double-clicking its 
icon. Look at the version number in 
the title bar. You must use at least 
Version 2.2 (the one released with 
Workbench 1 .3) for this experiment. 

© Type some text into the Notepad 
editor, and select a font - say, Dia- 
mond/1 2 - from the 'Font' menu. 

© Make sure the 'Global font' option is 
turned on (in the 'Format' menu), 
causing all of the text to change to 
Diamond 12. 

© Save the document (choose Pro- 
ject/Save As) using the name 
'ram:NPtest.' 

© Close the Notepad window or move 
it out of the way so you can double- 
click the 'Ram Disk' icon on the 
Workbench. The Ram Disk window 
should display the 'NPtest' icon for 
the Project you've just saved. 

© Click on the NPtest Project icon and 
select Workbench/Info to bring up 
the icon requester. Browse through 
the tool types using the tool type 
down-arrow gadget. 

Notice the tool type 'FONT=dia- 
mond.12?' You didn't enter the tool type 
into the icon requester explicitly (though 
you could have), but Notepad has put it 
there for you automatically! This 
ensures that the text is displayed using 
the Diamond 12 font when you double- 
click the Project icon. In other words, 
Notepad is using the icon as a way to 
store Project information without modi- 
fying the saved 'test' file - the document 
- itself. This technique is used by many 
programs, and serves as a kind of 'con- 
figuration file' that can be stored with 
individual projects. 

Notice that Project icon tool types 
can work in conjunction with the too! 



types stored in the Tool icon itself! How 
this is handled depends on the applica- 
tion, but usually the Project icon over- 
rides the default values established by 
the Tool icon. Workbench just passes 
on Project icon information, and the 
application decides how to use the tool 
types in the Project icons, if at all. 
Some applications will ignore Project 
tool types, while others may have spe- 
cial tool types that work in the Project 
icons and not in the Tool icon. 

Extended selection 

We used extended selection earlier 
to override a Project icon's default tool. 
Extended selection can actually be 
applied to any number of icons, allow- 
ing you to use any number of Projects 
with a single Tool! 

Before seeing how this works, 
remember what is going on: Work- 
bench simply runs the Too! and then 
tells it about all of the Project icons. 
The Tool may choose to ignore multiple 
Projects, and many applications do. 
Applications that can handle multiple 
projects, however, will usually load in all 
of the Projects specified by extended 
selection! 

A good example of using extended 
selection for Project icons is the Print- 
Files utility in the Utilities drawer on the 
Workbench 1 .3 boot disk. PrintFiles 
simply sends text files to the printer, let- 
ting you print documents already cre- 
ated with Notepad or another text editor. 

Suppose you use Notepad to keep a 
list of things to accomplish for the 
week, saved in a Project file called 
'WeeklyToDo.' Another project called 
'Appointments' also sits in your 
Notepad drawer (organized person, 
aren't you?) Now it's late in Ihe day, 
and you need to start these documents 
printing while you work on other things. 
Rather than load each into Notepad 
and print it separately, you can use 
PrintFiles to print them both. 

Click once on the PrintFiles Tool icon, 
then hold down either Shift key on the 
keyboard. Click once on ihe 'Week- 
lyToDo' Project icon, then, still holding 
the Shift key, double-click on 'Appoint- 
ments.' PrintFiles will begin printing the 
first file, and when it is done, will eject 
the page (Notepad saves a form-feed at 
the end of each note) and print the next. 



The above operation is equivalent to 
using PrintFiles from the CLI and typing 
each of the document names as com- 
mand-line arguments, like this: 

printfiles WeeklyToDo Appointments 

In fact, Projects and tool types are in 
many ways an exact analogue to com- 
mand line arguments and switches. 
This is in keeping with the Amiga phi- 
losophy of having it both ways: a mod- 
ern icon-based user interface working 
alongside a traditional command-based 
one. 

An extreme example 

To see how Icons, Projects, and Tool 
Types can be used in an application, 
consider the behavior of Gold Disk's 
Trans Write word processor. (As Trans- 
Write's authors, we must confess that 
this is not an example chosen entirely 
at random.) In order to keep its docu- 
ments 'pure' so that they can be used 
with other text editing programs, Trans- 
Write saves additional information 
about a document in the Project icon's 
tool types. 

If you look at the Project icon for a 
TransWrite document, you'll find tool 
types defining everything from the size 
and position of the document's window 
to the position and width of the cursor. 
There are 24 tool types in all, and by 
reading them when the project is being 
loaded, TransWrite is able to set up the 
document exactly as it was when it was 
saved, including the state of all options. 

To see the tool types at work with 
extended selection, it is only necessary 
to save several TransWrite documents, 
each with different size and position of 
window, different text and page colors, 
etc. Now, when you extend-select all of 
the Projects along with the TransWrite 
Tool icon, all of the windows will open 
up in their original positions, colors, and 
cursor position, and each document will 
have its options set up as they were 
originally. 

The interesting thing about the use of 
tool types in this way is that you never 
actually need to edit the tool types in 
the icon manually, although you can if 
you wish. The tool types are just a way 
for the Tool to store extra Project infor- 
mation beyond what is stored in the 
project file itself. m 



56 .info MARCH 1992 




The Programmer 
Perplex: DOS 2.0 

by Jim Butterfield 



^\ o you write programs for the 
^^% Amiga? And now AmigaDOS 
^■^ 2.0 is here? And you don't 
know if you should be undertaking 
some sort of transition? 

Commodore CATS says: stop what- 
ever you're doing and start coding for 
AmigaDOS 2.0 right now. That's easy 
for them to say, but your questions may 
be: How? At what speed? With what 
retro compatibility? There are several 
strategies you could adopt. 

Strategy One: Ignore the whole thing. 
AmigaDOS 2.0 is supposed to be 
upward compatible. So, if you have 
written sensible programs, they will 
continue to run on 1 .2, 1 .3, 2.0 or what- 
ever. No need to even show that you've 
noticed DOS 2.0. Maybe you'll trim up 
your icons to look a little better with 2.0 
colors, but otherwise it will be business 
as usual. This is a workable strategy, 
but you'll miss oul on some of the 
flashy new 2.0 features. 

Strategy Two: Assume that every- 
body will go to 2.0 in the near future, 
and cut over now. Your program can 
easily check to make sure 2.0 is in 
place, and print a message if the user 
is not up-to-date. This is workable, but 
might get your programs off to a slow 
start. DOS 2.0 is only just coming into 
the user base. 

Strategy Three: Write two programs, 
one for 2.0 and one for pre-2.0. Twice 
the work? Not really. A conditional com- 
piler, assembler, or linker can produce 
the two packages from a common cod- 
ing kernel. You'll have to write some 
system-customized modules, of course. 
A good idea, but how do you distribute 
them? Both on one disk? Your intelli- 
gent users wouldn't load the wrong pro- 
gram, of course... or, if they did, you 
could have the programs do their stop- 
and-print-warning routine. 

Strategy Four: Write a single pro- 
gram that detects what kind of system 
it's running on, and invokes appropriate 
code according to that system. It 
seems ideal. Like Strategy Three, it will 



ilSSBMBBH 

technical support Iff JJ 



Figure 1 













+24 


More Library stuff 


+22 


Revision 




+20 


Version 




+ 14 


Flags, Library size 


Library Base +0 


Node structure 


-6 


"jump table" 











Within the structure of every Amiga shared library there are 

two words (two bytes each) giving the library's Version number 

(Important) and Revision number (not usually important). 

This number is checked when the library is opened 

(via the Exec OpenLibrary call). It may also be 

tested by any program using the library. 



take more coding work. The main prob- 
lem is that the resulting universal pro- 
gram is likely to be rather big, since it 
contains code for both options. You can 
get around that, too, by the use of over- 
lays, special libraries, or multiple tasks. 
But many programmers feel more com- 
fortable writing a unified program. 

Universal 2.0? 

The success of some of the above 
strategies depends upon the answer to 
the question: Will AmigaDOS 2.0 com- 
pletely replace earlier Amiga operating 
systems? The answer, in my opinion: to 
a large extent, but not totally. 

AmigaDOS 2.0 is so user-friendly 
that most Amiga owners will want to 
move to it. Both Workbench and 
CLI/Shell are enhanced to help the 
user. More, the operating system 
comes with new 'hooks' that encourage 
and assist programs in user- 
friendliness; a little programming effort 
will generate code that communicates 
in a useful and helpful way. 

I understand that the Amiga 3000, 
which is designed as an AmigaDOS 2.0 
machine, is very popular in the market- 



place. That's another sign that DOS 2.0 
is likely to take hold quickly. 

For existing machines, a 2.0 upgrade 
package is now available. It's attrac- 
tively priced, at least in the USA and 
Europe. Another reason why the switch 
to 2.0 looks promising. 

Why would anyone hold back? There 
are several possible reasons. First: 
some machines are not capable of 
doing the upgrade, at least in their origi- 
nal hardware configuration. The Amiga 
1000 can't hack it without help, such as 
a Rejuvenator board. Second: a few 
programs may not be able to make the 
transition to 2.0. If one such program 
happens to be a user's main 
workhorse, that would hold back an 
upgrade. 

There's a supplementary considera- 
tion for program-writers: the Com- 
modore CDTV system, as currently 
sold, is a Workbench 1.3 system. A pro- 
grammer who views CDTV as a possi- 
ble platform for development won't 
abandon the pre-2.0 coding style. It's 
quite likely that CDTV, too, will be 
moved along to DOS 2.0; but it hasn't 
happened yet. 



.infO MARCH 1992 57 



IIIIIIP 






■ 



.info technical sup: 



The 2.0 Advantage. 

The user sees many good things in 
the 2.0 interface. Here, I'll concentrate 
on what the programmer sees when 
working with 2.0. These facilities will 
allow the programmer to exploit new 
areas that will benefit the program's 
user interface. The list is long - I'll just 
try to touch on a few highlights. 

New libraries streamline and stan- 
dardize user interaction. ASL helps with 
file and font requesters. LOCALE 
eases the job of fitting multiple lan- 
guages to the same program. COM- 
MODITIES expedites input-stream work 
such as is performed by 'hot keys' or 
•screen blankers.' GADTOOLS pro- 
vides a simple way to gel and use stan- 
dard gadgets and menus. And there 
are other new libraries including UTIL- 
ITY, which performs various odd jobs 
such as string handling and arithmetic. 

Existing libraries have been dramati- 
cally upgraded and expanded. The 
number of system calls has about dou- 
bled (and there were plenty before 2.0). 
In particular, the DOS library has 
exploded; many features that were 
available only through DOS packets 
are now standard library calls. Intuition, 
too, has gone through a major upgrade: 
that's not surprising in view of the rich 
new array of screen and font options. 

I could go on. itemizing new device 
handlers, new system organization 
involving such things as notification, 
outline fonts, and the new chip set. Per- 
haps it's better to say that it's a whole 
new game with a whole new set of 
options. 

One more item that changes the con- 
cept of Amiga program structure: 
ARexx. This language will be a stan- 
dard part of 2.0 systems. You probably 
know by now that ARexx serves not 
only as a free-standing program lan- 
guage, but also does the job of inter- 
process communications. To these two 
functions, I might add a third: intra- 
process communications; a program 
talking to itself! Here's the idea: it's 
often easier to use ARexx as a user 
macro language, internal to the pro- 
gram, than to try to devise your own 
custom macro language. Consider that 
ARexx-based macros are iikely to be 
more readable than customized mate- 




Figure 2 



GfxBase = OpenLibrary("graphics.library",36L); 
if (Gf xBase == OL) .... 

V36 or later not available 



A. Open the library ONLY if it is version 2.0 or later. 



GfxBase = OpenLibrary ("graphics. library", OL); 

if (GfxBase == OL) ... [cant find ANY Gfx library}... 

if (GfxBase --> Version < 36) ... 

[found library, but not 2.0 version] 



B. Open the library in any case, but test to see if it is version 2.0 
or later. 

Two ways of checking that a library is version 2.0 or later. Method A 

opens the library only if the version number is sufficiently recent; an 

older or non-existent library will result in "failure". Method B opens 

the library if it is there at all: subsequently, the programmer checks to 

see what version is there. 

"Real" C programs would have somewhat more detail than that shown 

above: for example, the GfxBase value would be "cast" before being 

stored, and field Version would likely be coded lib_Version. 



rial, and once devised, can be easily 
extended for external (interprocess) 
use. 

Considerations 

The first thing your program must do 
about AmigaDOS 2.0. if it does any- 
thing at all, is to find out if it's there. 
That's not hard to do, since all existing 
libraries have a version number. Figure 
1 shows where this 16-bit version num- 
ber is stored, together with a less- 
important 'revision number.' If this num- 
ber is 36 or above, you may be sure 
you're in a 2.0 environment. Advanced 
technical types note slight variances 
between versions 35, 36, and 37; for 
most work you will do, testing for 36 
and above is quite safe. 

If your program needs to know about 
2.0 right away, it could check the Exec 
library, which will be in place and run- 
ning. Exec's version number will tell the 
story. Or, if your program doesn't need 
to test right away, such tests can take 
place as libraries are opened with Exec 
call OpenLibrary. As Figure 2 indicates, 



you may specify 1 want a library at 
least as recent as version 36,' and 
you'll either get it, or the zero pointer 
which indicates failure. If you can't get 
the library version you want, your pro- 
gram may choose to beat a hasty 
retreat. 

On the other hand, you may be 
designing your system to run in any 
environment. Open your chosen library 
with a specification of version or 
later, and you'll get it if it's there at all. 
Later, your program can test the ver- 
sion number to see if it may use some 
of those marvelous new 2.0 function 
calls. 

Libraries such as ASL won't be there 
at all, of course. In this case, your pro- 
gram wili have to do such things as file 
requesters the hard way. Perhaps it 
will have to depend on the ARP library, 
or perhaps it will use custom code. It 
might even grouchily ask for the exact 
file name, perhaps adding the extra 
comment, Isn't il time you upgraded to 
2.0?' 



58 .info MARCH 1992 




technical support 




ARexx: Seven Come 
Eleven 

by Mark R. Brown 



T 



1 was one of those simple, 
annoying problems I seem to 
run into all the time: I had a 
data plotting program to review and no 
data to plot. The obvious solution was 
to write an ARexx program to generate 
some data. But I didn't just want ran- 
dom X and Y coordinates. I wanted to 
process some real-world figures - data 
that might fit a real curve, with some 
meaningful error bars. It immediately 
occurred 1o me that a simulation of 
some real-world activity wouid fill the 
bill nicely. And what better real-world 
simulation than gambling? 

Gambling 'methods' 

Everybody and his fast-talking cousin 
Eddie has a scheme for 'beating the 
house' at its own game. Problem is, 



none of them work. The simple truth is 
that there's a house advantage built 
into each and every established casino 
game, and you can t beat the house. 
But you can devise systems that keep 
you from making stupid mistakes, and 
thus losing at a rate faster than the 
built-in house advantage. 

Because the house advantage on the 
craps table is relatively low for many 
bets, it's my favorite casino game. So 1 
decided to write an ARexx program to 
test my craps 'method' for maximum 
survival, while at the same time gener- 
ating some significant real-world data to 
run through MultiPiot. My craps method 
is a simple one: make all the best bets 
possible and avoid the bad ones like 
the plague. I've read about a dozen 
books on casino gambling, and they all 
say that the best bets on the craps 
table are the 'backup odds' bets you 
can make on a number once it is estab- 
lished as the point. As a matter of fact, 
these are the only bets you can make 
on a craps table that are offered without 
a house advantage! This means you 



can actually get a true odds payoff on 
these bets. The only house percentage 
on them comes from the passline bet 
you have to make up front in order to 
buy the privilege of making a backup 
odds bet. 

Program Design 

So 1 decided that 1 wanted my pro- 
gram to do two things: (1 ) Make a 
passline or come bet on every single 
throw of the dice to generate the maxi- 
mum possible table action. (2) Make 
the maximum allowable backup odds 
bet on the point thrown. 

I tailored the program to Iowa River- 
boat gambling rules, since the river- 
boats afford me my closest real-world 
chance for using the knowledge gener- 
ated by this test. Those rules limit 
passline bets to $3, and backup odds 
bets to 'single odds,' which means the 
next highest dollar amount that allows a 
proper payoff without making change. 
What this all boils down to is this: ! 
could make a $3 passline or come bet 




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on each roll of the dice, and make 
backup bets of $3 on a point of 4 or 1 0, 
$4 on 5 or 9, and $5 on 6 or 8. The 6/8 
bet pays 6 1o 5 ($6 for every $5 bet), 
the 5/9 bet pays 3 to 2, and the 4/1 
bet pays 1 to 1 . So, thanks to the payoff 
odds, on each and every backup odds 
bet I'd always win $6... when I won. 
Plus I'd win $3 for the passline or come 
bet that started the whole thing. 

Iowa gaming rules also limit you to a 
starting bankroll of $200. And, since it's 
a cruise, the time you spend at the 
table is limited to about three hours. 
Just as a guesstimate, I figured you 
can throw the dice about five or six 
times a minute at a craps table, at best, 
which translates into roughly 1000 
tosses of the dice per cruise, So those 
were my limits. 

I wasn't too concerned with 'style' 
since this was just a program for my 
own use, but I still always try to adhere 
to the bare bones of good programming 
practice, at least. No spaghetti code. 
Some structure. Self-explanatory 
variable names. And a few comments 
to jog my aging memory cells when I 
run into this long-forgotten program in 
some remote subdirectory someday. 

Line by Line 

Every ARexx program has to start 
with at least one comment line to lag it 
as a valid ARexx program, so I started 
my program with nine comment lines 
that briefly describe the program's pur- 
pose and limits. These are followed by 
a short DO loop that uses the ARexx 
SOURCELINE command to print lines 
2 thru 8 to the shell window when the 
program is run. This provides a mod- 
icum of 'user friendliness.' 

The OPTIONS PROMPT prompts the 
user for a number of riverboat trips to 
simulate. PULL pulls the answer from 
the shell window. There are no tests, so 
the user can type '-1 00' if he wants to, 
and the program will happily run for- 
ever. Since I'm the only user, I'm 
assuming I'm smart enough not to do 
this. 

The OPEN line opens our initial out- 
put file for us in RAM:. We'll want to 
sort the data later, so as a reminder of 
this, we've named the file "sortme." The 
CALLTIME('R') line resets the ARexx 
timer, which we're going to use 1o seed 



1 SUDD 



:>^i 







/ 



IA Craps — Constant Betting 
/* This program simulates Iowa Riverboat Craps. 
/* It assumes you make a $3 pass or come bet on 
/* each roll of the dice, and make the maximum 
backup odds bet on each point rolled. This 
version tucks away any part of a bankroll 
over $200 and quits if it drops below $50. 
Output is sent to a MultiPlot compatible file 



*/ 

*/ 
*/ 
*/ 
*/ 
*/ 
*/ 
*/ 



DO i = 2 to 8 

SAY SOURCELIHE(i) 
END 

OPTIONS PROMPT 'Number of Riverboat Trips: ' 

PULL trips 

OPEN ( ' outf ile' , ' ram : sortme ' , ' W ) 

CALL TIME('R' ) 

DO trips 

Bankroll =200 
MinRoll = Bankroll 
MaxRoll = Bankroll 
Pocket = 
TotRoll = Bankroll 
Bak. = 
Odd. = 
Odd. 4 = 3 
Odd. 10 = 3 
Odd. 5 = 4 
Odd. 9 = 4 
Odd. 6 = 5 
Odd. S = 5 

DO count = 1 to 1000 

Roll = RAHDOH(l, 6, TIME (' E' ) *100) + RANDOM(l, 6, 
TIME('E')*100) 

IF (Roll=7) THEN DO i = 4 TO 10 
IF Bak.i~=0 THEN DO 

Bankroll = Bankroll - 3 - Bak.i 
Bak.i = 
END 
END 
IF Bak.Roll~=0 THEN DO 

Bankroll = Bankroll +3+6 
Bak. Roll = 
END 
SELECT 

WHEN (Roll=7) | (Roll=ll) THEN Bankroll = Bankroll + 3 
WHEN (Roll=2) j (Roll=3) I (Roll=12) THEN Bankroll = 
Bankroll - 3 

continued 



our random number generator for the 
dice throws later. I've found the ARexx 
pseudorandom number generator 
seems to be more random if you seed it 
from the timer. 

The Main Loop 
We set up the main DO loop without 



any counter variable to increment. A 
simple 'DO trips' will do us, since we 
never need to refer to the value of Ihe 
loop counter. 

The next block of code sets the initial 
values of our variables. Though it 
appears at this stage as though I've 
carefully assessed the needs and 



60 .info MARCH 1992 




.info technical s 



clearly defined all the variables in 
advance, this is not the case. I've 
defined a couple up front, then come 
back and set up other variables as I've 
found the need for them. The Bankroll 
is set to $200, the Iowa gambling limit. 
We're going to keep track of how big 
and how small our bankroll gets, so we 
set up variables for those values. We 
will also put any winnings into our 
pocket, so we create an empty pocket 
by defining 'Pocket = 0.' We then set up 
two compound symbols to hold the 
amount of the backup bets we want to 
make for various point values ('Odd.') 
and the values of the actual bets we 
have going at any one time fbak.'). 
which we set to '0' to start with, of 
course. 

Now it's time to jump into the main 
DO loop for a single trip on the boat. 
We set the loop to go to 1 000, which 
we've guessed is the maximum number 
of times we can ever throw the dice in 
one trip. We roll two dice in the next 
line, seeding the random number gen- 
erator with the elapsed time using 




200) 



TotRoll 
TotRoll 



OTHERWISE Bate. Roll = Odd. Roll 
END 
IF BankRoll>200 THEN DO 

Pocket = Pocket + (BankRcll 
BankRoll =200 
END 
TotRoll = Bankroll + Pocket 
IF MinRoll>Totroll THEN MinRoll 
IF MaxRolKTotRoll THEN MaxRoll 
IF (Bankroll<=0) THEN BREAK 
IF (TotRoll<=50) THEN BREAK 
END 
SAY count 

WRITELN (' outfile' , RIGHT (TotRoll, 4) M 
RIGHT(TotRoll-MinRoll,4) || RIGHT (MaxRoll-TotRoll, 4) ) 
END 

CLOSE {'outfile') 

ADDRESS COMMAND 'sort ram : sortme ram: sorted' 

OPEN (' outfile' , ' ram: header' , 'W') 



WRITELN (' outfile ' , "*TITLE* CRAPS: " j| trips || " RUNS") 

WRITELN { ' outfile' , 

WRITELN ( ' outfile' , 

WRITELN ( ' outfile' , 

CLOSE ('outfile' ) 

ADDRESS COMMAND 'join ram: header ram: sorted as ram : Craps .dat' 

ADDRESS COMMAND 'delete ram: sortme ram: sorted rant : header' 



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TIME('E') to make sure things are really 
mixed up good. 



Testing., 

Now we check to see what hap- 
pened. We never really bother with 
placing a passline or come bet in this 
simulation. We just assume it's been 
made on every toss of the dice, and 
deduct or add to our bankroll depend- 
ing on the eventual outcome. This 
saves us a lot of bookkeeping, with the 
same results. So the first thing we do is 
to check and see if we rolled a 7. If so, 
we check the numbers between 4 and 
10 to see if we had any backup bets on 
those numbers. Since this is the first 
time through the loop, we didn't, but on 
subsequent rolls of the dice, we're 
bound to. Since we're checking 4 
through 10 inclusive, this means we're 
also checking the number 7.' Of 
course, we'll never have a backup bet 
resting on 7' but who cares? It's easier 
to leave it in than jump around it. Any- 
way, if we've rolled a 7,' it wipes out 
any backup bets we have working, and 
we start over. So our loop deducts $3 
for the passline or come bet and the 
amount of the backup odds bet for 
every one we have active, and sets all 
our backup bet amounts {bak.i') to 0. 

Then we check to see if we've rolled 
a number equal to one of our standing 
backup odds bets. That's what IF 
bak.Roll ~= THEN DO' does for us. 
That means we won! So we add $3 
(the payoff amount for our passline or 
come bet) plus $6 (the payoff on our 
odds bet) to our bankroll, reset our bet 
indicator ('bak.Roll') to 0, and move on. 

We've also made a pass or come 
bet, since we make one on every roll. 
(They are both really the same bet. It's 
just terminology. Trust me.) So the next 
couple of lines check to see if we've 
won or lost on that bet. WHEN we roll 7 
or 11 , we win and add $3 to our 
Bankroll. WHEN we roll 2, 3, or 12, we 
lose and subtract $3. Otherwise, we 
make our backup odds bet by setting 
'bak.Roll.' 

Money Management 

Now we're done. Except for doing 
some money management. 'IF 
BankRoll>200 THEN DO' checks and 
sees if we are holding more than $200 



Craps Terminology 



Backup odds bet 



True odds 



House advantage 



Point 



Passline bet 
Come bet 
Come-out roll 



An additional bet placed on a number after 
it has been established as the point, which 
pays off at true odds. 

A bet that pays off based on the actual 
probability of its occurrence, without a 
built-in house advantage. 

The built-in percentage that the house is 
guaranteed to win, over time, on a particu- 
lar bet. 

Any number thrown on the come-out roll 
(other than 7 or 1 1 . which are instant win- 
ners, or 2, 3, or 12, which are instant 
losers), which then becomes the number 
you try to roll again before rolling a 7. 

The 'up front,' even-payoff bet you make at 
the start of a shooter's turn at the dice. 

Equivalent to a passline bet. but can be 
made on any roll of the dice. 

The first roll of the dice in a series. 



in our hands. If we are, then we put 
some into our pocket, so we don't gam- 
ble it away later if things get tight. We 
then check to see if the figures we're 
keeping track of for the minimum num- 
ber of dollars we're holding ('MinRoll') 
or the maximum ('MaxRoll') need to be 
updated by current conditions. We're 
going to walk away from the table if our 
Bankroll reaches $0 or if ourtolal 
bankroll, including what's in our pocket 
(TotRoll') drops below $50. 

At this point, we have the program 
echo to the screen how may tosses of 
the dice we lasted through. Just for 
curiosity's sake (and to give us some 
occasional feedback that the program 
is still running). We won't use this data 
in our oulput file. 

Data Output 

Now we write the pertinent data line 
to our output file, formatting it so that it 
fits into nice, neat, justified columns 
four characters wide. The MultiPlot pro- 
gram wants the data itself ('TotRoll'), 
plus error values for how much lower 
and higher we deviated from the final 
data. For this, we have to use subtrac- 



tion to find the difference between the 
actual MinRoll and MaxRoll amounts 
and our final TotRoll. The 'END' at this 
point loops back and takes another trip 
on the riverboat. 

Now we have to format the file and 
sort the data. We could do this with 
ARexx routines, but we're going to be 
lazy and use AmigaDOS commands 
instead. The ARexx 'ADDRESS COM- 
MAND' syntax passes commands to 
AmigaDOS, and we use it to send the 
'sort command to organize our data. 
Nice, neat, and simple. The next few 
lines of our program create a 'header' 
that the MultiPlot program requires. We 
then go back to AmigaDOS to 'join' the 
two files together, and delete our work 
files. We end up with a MultiPlot format 
file in RAM: called "Craps.dat" that we 
can plot and play with. 

Now, this program isn't slick and pol- 
ished, but it's typical of the types of pro- 
grams I write for myself. It gets the job 
done. It also used some tricks and 
shortcuts that saved time and effort, 
while solving my problem. And that is, 
to me, what ARexx is all about. 



62 .infO MARCH 1992 



AT PR 




TIME 



. . . continued from page 66 

forth 36 guidelines for improving CDTV 
software quality. Many of them repeat what 
we've said in these pages. Among the many 
excellent recommendations: 'No low qual- 
ity images." 'There should be no signs of 
AmigaDOS.' 'Efforts must be made to 
reduce perceived boot-up time." '[The pro- 
gram] must work on all relevant platforms.' 
'Fonts should be simple, ami-aliased, and at 
least 20 point size.' 'No spelling or gram- 
matical errors are allowed.' 'All titles need 
to be interruptable at any time.' 'The prod- 
uct should not queue up button presses.' 
'All titles musl have an important and dis- 
tinguishing value over doing the product on 
magnetic media, or by book, or by cas- 
sette.' 'Multimedia elements should be 
comparable lo video or cartoons viewed on 
TV." If CDTV developers heed what Com- 
modore and Ms. Wellington have told them 
in this letter, CDTV software should show a 
marked improvement in quality. 



TRAINING MARKET 

r\\\ the experts agree: corporate (raining is going to be a multi-billion dollar 

business. Commodore is jumping on the bandwagon with its 'Commodore Interactive 
Training System,' a program that integrates the capabilities of the Amiga 3000, CDTV, 
and AmigaVision. CITS will be promoted as an inexpensive solution to the problem of 
training and re-training personnel. IMSATT Corporation's SkiliWorks Adult Literacy 
courseware is one of the first applications available to demonstrate this technology to 
business and industry. CBM has mounted a series of ads in a half dozen different pro- 
fessional publications to promote the CITS system. 



SMALL WONDERS 



M, 



lultimedia machines have just 
not caught on yet with consumers. Though 
the manufacturers aren't putting sales fig- 
ures on billboards yet, the industry gristmill 
intimates that, as I write this, aboul 5.000 
CDTV units have been sold so far in North 
America, with aboul 30,000 lotal world- 
wide. But North American CD-I unit sales 



are said to be under 1.000 units. Both 
machines are still waiting for the right 
application lo come along and capture the 
public's imagination and give their sales a 
sendoff. 

Meanwhile, there's yet another compet- 
ing format that's based on an IBM/PC com- 
puter platform. It's called MPC, and will 
probably appeal mostly lo people who cur- 
rently use PCs. „,— 




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v. X, 



A T 




TIME 



116CDTV 
SOFTWARE 

I LEO 



What follows is the most complete list we 

could put together of CDTV software, compiled 

from a variety of 'official' Commodore 

sources. Some titles are available now, some 

soon, some who knows? 

> Advanced Military Systems 
>■ Air Traffic Controller 

> American Heritage Dictionary 

> American Vista Atlas 

> Angel of the City 
>- Animals in Motion 

> Animated Coloring Book 

> Barney Bear Goes Camping 

> Barney Bear Goes to School 

> B.A.T. 

> Basketball 

> Battle Chess 
>- Battlestorm 

>■ Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure 

> Blockbusters 

>■ Bun For Barney 

>• Cardinal of the Kremlin 

> CDTV Disc Jockey 

> CDTV Sports Football 

>■ Case of the Cautious Condor 

>• Challenge Golf 

>• Chaos in Andromeda 

>■ Cinderella 

>• Classic Board Games 

> Complete Works of Shakespeare 

> Composer Quest 

> DJ ReMix 

>■ Defender of the Crown 

> Defender of the Crown II 
>• Dinosaurs for Hire 



COALS TO NEWCASTLE 

I or America, selling electronics to the Japanese 
has been a bit like carrying coals to Newcastle: there ain't 
much of a market for it. But Commodore has announced thai 
it has joined together with Milsui to form a 'CDTV Coalition' 
in Japan. The Coalition's purpose is to promote and develop 
CDTV players and titles in and for the Japanese market. Japan 
Electronics Publishing, PCM Complete, and others have 
already announced plans to develop software. Still more com- 
panies are weighing the possibility. From what we hear, 
CDTV may have already sold as many units in Japan as in the 
U.S., so the Land of the Rising Sun could turn out to be a sig- 
nificant market for Commodore. 













ADVERTISERS' INDEX 








Reader 


Advertiser Page 






Service # 










112 


Activa International 


13 


107 


ASDG. Inc 


7 


113 


Axiom 


15 


173 


Commodore Business 






Machines 


11 


143 


Consultron 


63 


140 


Devware 54, 


55 


177 


Grapevine Group, The 


61 


132 


Moonlighter Software 






Development 


61 


130 


NewTek, Inc 


68 


120 


Psygnosis 


2 


125 


Psygnosis 


3 


118 


Psygnosis 


33 


119 


ReadySoft, Inc 


, 9 


124 


Redmond Cable 


63 


136 


Software Support 






International 


17 


114 


Software Support 






International 


59 






128 


Stylus 


5 






133 


UniliGraphics 


40 





















64 info MARCH 1992 



AT PR E S S TIME 



> Dr. Wellman 

> Dominion 

> Drakkhen 

> Dungeon Master 

>• Electronic Crayon: All Dogs Go to Heaven 
Excalibur 

> Falcon 

> Family Circus Home Video Titling 

> Family Drug and Poison Information Center 

> Fun School 3 for Under 5's 

> Future Wars 

> Garden Fax: Fruits, Vegetables & Herbs 
Garden Fax: Garden Plants 

> Garden Fax: Indoor Plants 
Garden Fax: Trees, Shrubs & Roses 
Garfield (Europe only) 

>■ Grolier Encyclopedia 

> Guiness CD Disc of Records 

> Heather Hits Her First Home Run 
Herewith the Clues 

> Horseracing 

> Hound of the Baskervilles 
Hutchinson's Encyclopedia 

> Illustrated Holy Bible 

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade 
Indoor Sports 

> Jack Nicklaus Golf 
>• Japan World 

Karaoke Hits I 
Karaoke Hits II 
Keyboard Music Maker 
>- LTV English 

Learn French With Asterix 
Lemmings 

> Living Book Series 

> Long Hard Day at the Ranch 

> Loom 

> Maelstrom 

Many Roads to Murder 

> Mickey 1,2, 3's 
Mind Run 

> Mind Run II 

> Moving Gives Me a Stomach Ache 

> Mud Puddle 

>■ Murder Anyone? 
Murder Off Miami 

> Music Maker 



The CD-I Connection 

Ironies abound in real life. Lately, we've heard from 
reliable sources that many of the graphics and animations used 
in the initial wave of CD-I software were actually developed 
on - what else? - the Amiga. We thought they looked awfully 
good... 



Musicolor 

> My Paint 

> New Basics Electronic Cookbook 

> Ninja High School Comix 
North Polar Expedition 

>- Our House 

> Paper Bag Princess 

> Peter Rabbit 

> Prehistorik 

Pro Tennis Tour II 
Psycho Killer 

> Raffles 

> Reading With Asterix and Son 

> Scary Poems for Rotten Kids 

> Sea Beast 

> Secret of Monkey Island 

> Sherlock Holmes, Consulting Detective 

> Sim City 

Snoopy: The Case of the Missing Blanket 

> Spirit of Excalibur 

> Spy vs. Spy 

> Super Games Pak 

> Tale of Benjamin Bunny 

> Team Yankee 

> Terminator 

>■ Thomas's Snowsuit 
Time Table of Business 

> Time Table of Science 

> Time Table of the Arts 
>• Trivial Pursuit 

> Trump Castle 

> Ultimate Basketball 

> Unreal 

>■ Video Maker 

Wayne Gretzky Hockey 
►■ Women in Motion 

> World Vista Atlas 

> Wrath of the Demon 
>■ Xenon II: Megablast 



.info MARCH 1992 65 





AT PRESS TIME 



CDTV DEVELOPMENTS 



H, 



lave you heard the news'.' 
After months of downplaying the Amiga 
inside CDTV. at CES in Las Vegas Com- 
modore announced that it had discovered 
thai not only is CDTV expandable into a 
full-blown Amiga computer, but that capa- 
bility is probably the best reason to buy 
CDTV instead of CD-I! (What has .info 
been saying all this time?!?) 

No matter that they Stave become True 
Believers late in ihe game... at leasi Com- 
modore is now promoting the CDTV's 
expansion capabilities. Let's hope they get 
ihe public's attention. 

Meanwhile, there is a plethora of CDTV 
news. 

NEW STUFF 

vBM has even released the 
components that make the CDTV-to-Amiga 
upgrade possible. (Each product carries a 
'manufacturers suggested retail price' and a 
'suggested introductory price.' so we'll list 
both.) The CD1252 (S79.99/S59.99) is a 
wireless infrared mouse molded in black 
plastic to match the CDTV case. It's not 
only Amiga software compatible, but gives 
you mouse control over many CDTV titles, 
as well. The mouse is included in the 
CD 1 500 Professional Bundle ($249.99/ 
$199.99). which also gives you an Amiga- 
compatible black plastic disk drive, a black 
Amiga-2000 style keyboard, vl .3 of Ami- 
»aDOS. an Amiga 500 manual, and the 




Appetizer software pack. (Our keyboard 
was a standard A2000 keyboard spray- 
painted semi-gloss black, which looked a 
little cheesy, but Commodore assures us 
that they are now shipping molded black 
plastic versions. ) The introduction of this 
package means you'll be able to put 
together a CDTV-based Amiga system with 
a meg of chip RAM, a CD-ROM drive, a 
floppy disk, infrared mouse, and keyboard 
for about $1000, street price. That makes 
CDTV the least expensive CD-ROM based 
computer in the world; maybe that will turn 
some heads! 

Commodore has also released the 
CD 1 200 trackball ($1 29.99/S99.99), which 
we haven't seen yet. But we did gel the 
CD 1 300 Video Genlock ($249.99/$ 199.99) 
in the mail. The genlock is a handy device. 



The new 

CD 1300 genlock 

for CDTV and 

home video 

producers. 




Commodore's 

Professional 

Bundle 

expands CDTV 

into a 

full-fledged 

Amiga system. 



and can be turned on or off from the 
remote. It replaces ihe RF output board, so 
if you genlock you'll have to do without RF 
output; that's fine with us. 

If you're short on disk caddies, get the 
CD 1400, a pack of two CD caddies that 
retails for $14.99. (And pray that Com- 
modore will gel rid of the damn things 
someday.) Commodore has also released 
the CDTV plug-in personal memory' cards. 
(Remember the front slot? The one nobody 
supports?) The 64K personal memory card, 
the CDI401, goes for S129.99/S99.99. The 
256K CDI405 is $349.99/$299.99. Instead, 
we recommend you pick up a disk drive for 
less than the 'introductory' price of the 64K 
card. It just makes a lot more sense. 

And Commodore showed its A560 
CDTV-compalible CD-ROM drive at CES 
again. It should be available by the time 
you read this. Really. And Commodore 
adds that producing a compatible CD-ROM 
drive for the A2000 is a 'top priority.' 

QUALITY CONTROL 

Oome of the best CDTV news 
we've had lately came in mid-January in 
the form of a letter sent to CDTV develop- 
ers by Gail Wellington, Commodore's 
Direclor of Special Projects (and thus, 
CDTV). While congratulating developers 
on their efforts for 1991. she added 'As we 
move on to 1992, Commodore's focus is on 
litlc Ljualily.'The six pages that follow set 



continued on page 63 



66 .infO MARCH 1992 



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Technical Support 



New Video Toaster System 2.0 - New Effects, Ray Tracing, and even better Character Generator. 

Video Toaster System 2.0: 

9 essential tools you need if you're using 
your Amiga for video or graphics. 



4 Input Production Switcher 



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Toaster System 2-0 includes organic switcher 

transitions like fire, smoke, clouds, pouring liquid 

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24-bit Broadcast Paint 






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ToasterPaint is the only true broadcast-quality 

NTSC paint system for the Amiga. System 

2.0 brings new features including 

improved auto-scrolling and direct import of 
images from the Toaster's frame grabber. 




Much more than just simple weatherman over a 

map, Toaster" keying lets you do luminance 

fade transitions, or combine two live sources 

using a third source as a key and even 

key-based digital trails. 



Digital Video Effects 




Real-time digital video effects on live video 

at 60 fps. From flip, spin and tumble all the 

way to amazing perspective warping effects 

and even incredible sphere and cube 

mapping in real-time. 

3D Animation 




Lightwave 3D 2.0 offers over 150 new 
features including blazing rendering speed, 

multiple morph targets, 3008 x 1920 

resolution and true ray-tracing! 2.0 makes 

modeling a joy with new tools like bend, 

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Color Processing 




Control of color effects from the switcher 
and 20 new default effects make ChromaFX 
faster and more powerful. Now combine effects 
and color cycle with new organic switcher 
transitions for incredible new possibilities. 



35ns Character Generator 




1 6 million color 35ns broadcast text with over 

100 high-quality, anti-aliased type-faces. 

System 2.0 also features faster loading of 

pages, framestores for backgrounds, 

improved keying and text file import. 

Dual Frame Buffers 




Hold two high-resolution 16 million color 
video frames in perfect YlQ-encoded RS-170A 

network quality. System 2.0 brings you 
enhanced hue matching, even faster loading, and 
framestore file compression to save disk space. 

Still Store/Frame Grabber 




Freeze flawless broadcast resolution images 

instantly from any color camera, laserdisc or 

even cable TV with better color reproduction, 

faster loading, and powerful new field and 

frame saving options. 




Free Toaster Video Tape 

We can't show you the power and quality of the new Video Toaster in a magazine ad. So we've decided to prove it with a free VHS tape 

about the Toaster produced entirely v/ith the Toaster. This award-win ning demo-withi n-a-demo starri ng NewTek's Kiki Stockhammer 

is aptly titled "REVOLUTION". Call today to find out about the most successful Amiga product of all time. 

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Toaster 1.0 users call your dealer or BOD -843-8834 to upgrade today, 

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Commodore Amiga inc. Video Toaster. Lightwave 3D, Chro:naFX and ToasterPaint are trademarks of NewTek, inc. £> MewTet, Inc. 

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